Latvian President Raimonds Vejonis withdrew his nomination for the leader of the New Conservative Party Aldis Gobzems to become Latvia’s next prime minister after two weeks of coalition talks between five parties boiled down to nothing, the president announced on December 10.
Following election on October 6 that produced a fragmented parliament of seven parties, Gobzems was the third PM candidate that failed to agree on a coalition government.
Vejonis criticised parties and their leaders for putting their own ambitions ahead of the interests of the country, the president’s office said in a statement.
Gobzems said his government formation mission had been “torpedoed” from the onset and that Latvia was “rapidly heading towards extraordinary elections,” state broadcaster LSM reported.
President Vejonis announced consultations between parties would take place shortly. He suggested a new PM candidate might come from one of the smaller parties.
Following the October election, the pro-Russian Harmony party emerged as the winner with 23 seats in the 100-seat parliament.
Yet Harmony has not been taking part in coalition talks as other parties vowed not to cooperate with it because of its apparent pro-Russian stance, a political liability in Latvia, once a part of the Soviet Union and currently an enthusiastic member of the EU and Nato.
That leaves six other parties to agree on a potential coalition. The populist KPV and the New Conservative Party (JKP) each has 16 seats in the parliament. The National Alliance and liberal For Development/For! have 13 MPs each.
The Greens and Farmers Union follows with 11 MPs while the New Unity party has eight.