Social Democratic Party (SDP) parliamentary whip Arsen Bauk said on Wednesday that his party would start collecting signatures for a motion for a vote of no confidence in Education Minister Blazenka Divjak, whom the SDP considers the most responsible, together with Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic, for the situation in the education system.
"We plan to start collecting the signatures today so that we can collect the (required number of) signatures for the no-confidence motion to be tabled during the ongoing regular session, which ends on 15 December," Bauk told the press.
The SDP will collect signatures primarily from the Opposition parties that support the SDP's presidential candidate, Zoran Milanovic, and according to Bauk, this is not so because of Milanovic but because of political orientation.
Under the parliament's rule book, a motion for a no-confidence vote can be tabled to the parliament if it is supported by signatures of at least a fifth of lawmakers, that is, 31 MPs. After the motion is added to the parliament's agenda, the government is supposed to give its opinion about it within eight days, and a parliamentary debate is to be conducted within 30 days after the submission of the government's opinion.
Milorad Batinic, the parliamentary whip of the Croatian People's Party (HNS), which nominated Minister Divjak, said today that the SDP's proposal signalled "a lack of ideas and content in the SDP's activities in the last two years".
The HNS parliamentarian said he was not afraid of the reaction of the Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ), the senior partner in the ruling coalition, to the SDP proposal.
Batinic does not think that Prime Minister Plenkovic will fire Divjak whom he described as "one of the most successful ministers."
"There are no objective reasons for that to happen," Batinic said.
"I am confident that PM Plenkovic will support her. She is a member of his cabinet, after all," the HNS MP said.
Asked by the press whether the education minister should be considered guilty for the recent 36-day strike of teachers, Batinic dismissed any responsibility on Divjak's part.