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19-11-2017

Court finds Civic Democrats’ lower house seat awarded to wrong candidate

A lower house seat won by the Civic Democrats in Central Bohemia was won by Martin Kupka, not Petr Bendl as announced after last month’s general elections. The discovery was made by the Supreme Administrative Court, which carried out a recount of preferential votes in half of the region. The finding does not alter the composition of the new Chamber of Deputies, where the Civic Democrats are the second biggest party with 25 mandates.

The chairman of the Supreme Administrative Court panel, Tomáš Langášek, said on Sunday that both the Ministry of the Interior and legislators should respond to the shortcomings uncovered. Judge Langášek said if no changes were made the court might in future have to deal with more contested results, which would lead to paralysis.

Poll: Zeman would get 41.5% in vote for president

The incumbent Miloš Zeman would receive 41.5 percent of the vote in a presidential election if it were held now, suggests an opinion poll conducted for Czech Television by the TNS Kantar and Median agencies. Scientist Jiří Drahoš would come second in a vote for head of state at the present time with 30.5 percent, followed by businessman and lyricist Michal Horáček on 16.5 percent and former prime minister Mirek Topolánek on 4 percent, the survey indicates.

The poll suggests Mr. Zeman would come first among supporters of ANO, Freedom and Direct Democracy and the Communists. Mr. Drahoš is favoured by voters of TOP 09, the Mayors and Independents, the Civic Democrats and – by a slim margin – Mr. Zeman’s former Social Democrats.

Almost half of Czechs back post-election moves of Babiš and Zeman, suggests survey

Almost half of Czechs agree with the post-election moves of Andrej Babiš, chairman of the winning ANO party, and President Miloš Zeman, suggests an opinion poll conducted for the iRozhlas.cz news site by the Median agency last week. Mr. Babiš is working on forming a minority government and the head of state has promised him two attempts at winning approval for such a government in the Chamber of Deputies.

Some 49 percent of respondents in the survey said that they approved the actions of Mr. Babiš since his party took almost 30 percent of the vote in elections last month. Support for Mr. Zeman’s approach stands at 46 percent, the poll suggests.

Critics say that the pair are working in cahoots and that Mr. Zeman is giving Mr. Babiš more leeway than is traditional. For his part, the president says he has a creative approach to using the Constitution.

The newly elected Chamber of Deputies is due to convene for the first time on Monday.

Czech e-retailers set for record turnover in 2017

Czech internet retailers could achieve turnover of CZK 100 billion for the first time this year, Czech Television reported. While in 2012 Czech consumers spent around CZK 51 billion on online purchases, in 2016 the figure was CZK 98 billion and estimates suggest this year it could climb to CZK 115 billion.

E-retailers on the Czech market are anticipating a one-day bump in revenues of tens of percent next week on Black Friday – when many goods are discounted – and have been hiring extra staff to cover that day and the pre-festive season period.

Questions raised over Zeman book billboards

Billboards advertising a new book of interviews with President Miloš Zeman have appeared throughout the country in recent days in a campaign that experts say is unusual for a book, iDnes.cz reported. Journalist Pavel Mandys, who writes about literature, said publishers normally could not afford such advertising, while Lukáš Růžička of publishing house Paseka said firms in the business would only use billboards if they thought they could sell books with a large print run.

The president’s book We’ll Manage to Govern Ourselves has come out in an initial print run of 7,500 and a representative of publishers Olympia refused to divulge what the billboard campaign had cost the company.

Mr. Zeman is standing for a second term in a presidential election in January.

Plzeň equal club record of 16 wins in succession

The Czech soccer league leaders Viktoria Plzeň beat Slovácko 4:0 away on Saturday evening. The result saw the West Bohemians take revenge after Slovácko dumped them out of the domestic cup and equaled a club record of 16 wins in a row set two seasons ago. They also extended their Czech record of wins from the start of this season to 14 in succession.

Despite the fact their nearest challengers also won, Plzeň are 13 points clear of the rest of the pack and a senior figure at current champions Slavia Prague recently congratulated them on “winning the league.”

Weather forecast

It should be cloudy with snow in some parts of the country in the Czech Republic on Monday. Temperatures are due to reach around 4 degrees Celsius. Snow should give way to rain in the middle of the week.

19-11-2017