božo petrov.jpg
Photograph: HINA/ ua

Deputy Prime Minister and leader of the Bridge party on Wednesday announced amendments to the law regulating special rights for former presidents and confirmed that the government would partially approve an amendment to the 2016 draft budget that would reduce outlays for the former president's office in the amount of HRK 600,000.

"The amendment will be accepted to a certain measure with regard to finances and I hope that the amendments to the law on the former president's office will be introduced," Petrov told reporters.

Bridge's leader said that in Germany former presidents could have the use of an office for a period of five years after their term and, Petrov said, it is necessary to present a public report describing "what has been achieved in that period."

"It has been ten years and we haven't seen any reason why hundreds of thousands of kuna should be spent along with security measures that cost more than a million kuna. Frankly, we can see no effect," he claimed.

Former President Stjepan Mesic reacted sharply to the news and said that this was a "perfidious attempt" to abolish the Office of the Former President by those who, he claimed, are bringing democracy into question and who are disturbed by his firm anti-fascist stance.

Bridge also proposed that part of the funding earmarked for political parties should be transferred to develop the Croatian Science Foundation and Petrov said  that he believes political parties "should show solidarity with science."

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