Six months ahead of the presidential election, two candidates for the post have already collected 50,000 signatures needed to officially register as candidates, Czech Radio reported on Saturday. According to Czech Radio, it is almost certain that lyricist Michal Horáček and the current head of state Miloš Zeman will take part in the upcoming elections. Jiří Drahoš, a former head of the Academy of Sciences, said he was also getting close to the target figure. Political parties are planning to announce their candidates after the parliamentary elections in October, Czech radio reported.
Temperatures in the Czech Republic in the next four weeks should remain average for the time of year, according to a regularly monthly weather forecast issued by the Czech Hydro-Meteorological Institute on Saturday. Day-time temperatures are expected to drop from the current 24 degrees to around 21 degrees Celsius. Rainfall levels are also expected to be average for the time of year.
The 2017 Prague Pride LGBT festival, a week-long event celebrating sexual diversity, culminated on Saturday with a traditional carnival parade through the city centre. Several thousand people took part in the procession, which set off from Wenceslas Square and ended at Prague’s Letná plain, where a concert is held. Around two hundred people took part in a march in support of the “traditional family” model organized by Christian Democrat opponents of Prague Pride.
President Miloš Zeman will appoint the winner of the upcoming parliamentary elections as the next prime minister, the presidential spokesman Jiří Ovčáček told the news site Aktuálně.cz on Saturday. Mr Ovčáček spoke in reaction to the police request to lift the parliamentary immunity of former Finance Minister and ANO parta leader Andrej Babiš and the deputy chairman of the party Jaroslav Faltýnek. The request is connected with the so-called Stork’s Nest affair, where a company belonging to Babiš‘ large agro-chemical group Agrofert applied for a 50 million crown European grant for work on a recreation and hotel complex. The funding was supposed to be directed towards small and medium sized companies. Mr Ovčáček also questioned the fact that the police move came just two months ahead of the general elections in October.
An exhibition dedicated to the famous footwear designer Manolo Blahnik got underway at Prague’s Kampa Museum on Friday. Entitled Manolo Blahnik: The Art of Shoes, it explores the visionary designer’s 45 year long career, featuring more than 200 pairs of shoes and over 80 sketches by Blahnik from the 1970’s till today. Manolo Blahnik, whose father was born in Czechoslovakia, becoame world famous thanks to the series Sex in the City and the film Marie Antoinette.The travelling exhibition, which has already been on display in Milan and St Petersburg, will be on display in Prague until November 12.
Clean up work is underway in the village of Bohuslavice in north-east Bohemia where a gale-force wind damaged roofs on some eighty houses on Friday afternoon. No injuries h been reported. Firemen in the Hradec Králové region on Friday responded to over 200 emergency calls, clearing fallen trees from roads and rail tracks. Several villages in the north and eastern part of the country suffered power blackouts. Meteorologists on Saturday warned of heavy storms due to hit the north-eastern part of the country in the afternoon.
The Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs has given a warning for visitors to several districts of the Danish capital, Copenhagen, to take special care after an escalation of gang violence there in recent weeks. The warning applies to the Norrebro, Bronshoj, Husum, and Tingbjerg districts. Copenhagen police introduced a stop and search regime in parts of the city in July with the area it applies to widened in August in response to the gang violence.
ANO leader Andrej Babiš said he was surprised by the police move to seek
the lifting of his parliamentary immunity. He said he had recently been
told that he would just be treated as a witness in the so-call Stork’s
Nest affair. Babiš added that the move was part of a political battle and
attempt to discredit him and preventing him from standing in elections to
the lower house scheduled for October. ANO deputy chairman Jaroslav
Faltýnek said he would not prevent any moves to push ahead with the police
investigation. He added that he had been expected to be treated as a
witness as a former board member of the agro-chemical group Agrofert. He
added he was being victimised by the police.
The lower house committee dealing with immunity issues is likely to meet on August 18. The first meeting of the lower house of parliament to deal with the issue is seen on September 5. The Stork’s Nest affair focuses of 50 million crowns in European funds for small and medium sized business claimed for a hotel and recreation centre linked to Andrej Babiš’ company Agrofert.
Škoda Auto models sold in Russia have been recalled by mother company, Volkswagen, due to technical problems. The recalls affects 3,463 cars in total with Octavia, Yeti, and Rapid models build by the Czech Republic’s biggest carmaker included. It is not the first time that Škoda cars sold in Russia have been subject to a recall this year. Earlier, a much bigger recall of 43,000 cars built between 2012 and 2016 included near all models in the Czech carmaker’s range.