Lithuanian parties have unique opportunity to rise to new life - president
Lithuanian political parties have a unique opportunity to rise to a new life after recent political corruption scandals and they need volunteers, just like the Armed Forces do, President Dalia Grybauskaitė said on Tuesday.
"However weak, exhausted and drained the parties might be, they are the most reliable foundation for the democratic development of a country. Today, they have a unique opportunity to rise to a new life," she said in her annual State of the Nation Address to the Seimas.
In the president's words, analysis of mistakes and responsible leadership can bring the party system back to its feet, but only those parties that will be able to overcome "inner antagonism, smearing and discrediting, accumulation of power in top ranks, and the isolation of ordinary members, that are built not only on the name of their leader, but on own ideology, like-minded partnership, shared values and ideals have a real future"
"Otherwise, the dynamic and transparent generation of new politicians, who see the success and the honor of Lithuania as more important than their private property and who will not sell their independence for any price, will remain an unrealized political dream", Grybauskaitė said
"We may see pseudo-democratic movements triumph in the next elections or a new corporate savior rising from the waters of disappointment," she warned.
The president said that ensuring the transparency of election campaigns remains a challenge to Lithuania's "still fragile democracy", describing ideas of lifting the existing ban on legal entities' donations to parties as dangerous.
The president also called for overhauling the Central Electoral Commission to ensure that none of its members are delegated by political parties.