By Boris Pavelic
According to the first exit polls the Kukuriku coalition has won 82 seats in the 151- seats Sabor. The HDZ, according to the exit polls, won 40 seats.
The coalition comprises the Social Democrats, the Pensioners Party, the Croatian Peoples Party and a regional party, the Istrian democratic Assembly. According to the exit polls, the Social Democratic Party, SDP, won 67 seats in parliament, Croatian People’s Party, HNS got 12 seats, Croatia’s Pensioner’s Party won two MPS and the Istria Democratic Assembly, IDS one MP. The Kukuriku coalition won total of 82 seats in parliament.
In the election campaign, Kukuriku promised an end to corruption while also warning that coming years would see considerable belt-tightening as the country learned to live within its means.
There was speculation that the new government would be obliged to seek aid from the IMF, but Kukuriku’s Prime Minister designate, Zoran Milanovic, during the campaign said the new government would do all it could to avoid that.
Kukuriku’s candidate for the post of vice-premier, Radimir Cacic, said the first move of the new government would be to carefully examine the state of the country’s finances. After that, the government would repay its outstanding debts to companies, hopefully easing the problem of widespread insolvency in the private sector.
The main task in foreign policy would be to take a more active role in the Southeast European region, building up a zone of peace, cooperation and friendship based on Euro-Atlantic values, Kukuriku’s candidate for foreign minister, Vesna Pusic, said.
Most analysts said the HDZ, led since 2009 by Jadranka Kosor, lost the election primarily because of the large number of corruption cases against senior officials, including the former HDZ president and Prime Minister, Ivo Sanader. The party itself is under investigation for allegedly running a slush fund.