Czech MEP arrives in parliament in cycling gear

15-07-2009

When the new European Parliament held its plenary session in Strasbourg on Tuesday, all the MEPs were smartly turned out for its first meeting. Except, that is, for Edvard Kožušník, who entered the parliament dressed head to toe in cycling gear. The Czech Civic Democrat MEP, who is 38, had cycled all the way from Prague to Strasbourg, which is a distance of over 800 kilometres. The reason? Mr Kožušník had promised voters he would get on his bike, if they gave him their support.

Photo: CTKPhoto: CTK A little earlier he spoke to Radio Prague:

“It was a promise to voters in the Czech Republic: I promised them I would ride all the way to Strasbourg for the first session of Parliament. I arrived yesterday after ten days and 871 kilometres. The idea behind the trip was also to promote our new political grouping of European reformers and conservatives, as well as to promote Madrid’s bid for the 2016 Olympic Games.”

How was the actual journey?

“It was nice. A really good chance to meet people along the way. The trip was from the Czech Republic to Germany and France.”

What was the reaction of your fellow colleagues in Parliament? We saw the footage when you appeared in cycling gear…

“They were surprised but they got it after I explained the reason.”

You often rely on your bike for transport: how about between Strasbourg and Brussels?

{laughs} “Of course that’s impossible. We have meetings every week and it took me ten days from Prague to Strasbourg! Of course, I do normally bike in Prague and the conditions for biking in either Brussels or Strasbourg are excellent and I will make use of them.

15-07-2009