Saeima postpones no-confidence vote against Justice Minister

The Latvian parliament on June 14 interrupted a debate on opposition lawmakers’ calls for Justice Minister Dzintars Rasnačs’ (National Alliance) resignation and decided to resume the meeting on June 20.

The vote on the no-confidence motion against the justice minister was postponed as several MPs are attending the commemorative events that are held in Latvia today to honor the memory of victims of Communist genocide and around 16,000 residents of Latvia who were deported to Siberia on June 14, 1941.

The parliament sitting was suspended after lawmakers had been debated the two petitions for Rasnačs’ resignation for more than an hour without coming to any agreement.

The Latvian parliament was supposed to vote June 14 on two petitions signed by opposition lawmakers and calling for Justice Minister Dzintars Rasnačs’ resignation. One petition has been launched by nonpartisan MP Romans Mežeckis and the other by the Latvian Association of Regions.

The lawmakers demanding Rasnačs’ resignation argued that the justice minister has failed to ensure a proper supervision of the Insolvency Administration and that the system has been left virtually unattended.

“The minister can neither lead the ministry to ensure it performs it functions nor can he supervise the Insolvency Administration,” the opposition lawmakers said.

Indeed, even coalition MPs did not shy away from criticizing Rasnačs, but most nevertheless said they wouldn't vote to have him sacked as it could cause the government to fall months before the election.

Nevertheless, MP Anrijs Matīss, who has terminated his membership in Unity party, is now leaving the Unity faction in Saeima as well, seeing as the party decided to vote against the no-confidence motion.

While criticized for years for deficiencies in regulating insolvency administration--seen by some to be little more than a racket--, Rasnačs has come under particular flak this time as a high-profile insolvency administrator was recently murdered in broad daylight in the Latvian capital

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