Lithuania

President Grybauskaitė vetoes coalition government involving Labour


Published

Just days after the completion of the Lithuanian general election President Dalia Grybauskaitė has vetoed the formation of a left wing coalition government which involves the Labour Party.

The move comes after the Labour Party became embroiled in a series of allegations about vote-buying; police are investigating 27 election irregularities many of which are said to involve the Labour Party. There is also an ongoing investigation into Labour’s leader Viktor Uspaskich, currently an MEP, over party financing irregularities. If he is found guilty he may face a parliamentary ban and serve a prison sentence.

The decision by the president puts into chaos the planned coalition of the Social Democrats, the major winners in the election, Labour and Order and Justice. The three party centre left coalition would have had 78 of the 141 seats in the Seimas.

Alternative coalitions are the Social Democrats with the incumbent government parties, Homeland and Liberal Movement but that would give only 71 seats. The Social Democrats with five smaller parties would give a majority of three but would be almost impossible to keep together. The alternative is for the Social Democrats to form a minority government.

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