Czech MPs have elected Stanislav Křeček as the country’s next
ombudsman. A former Social Democratic Party MP and deputy ombudsman, Mr.
Křeček, who is 81, will replace Anna Šabatová when her six-year term
ends next week. The new public advocate was elected by 91 of 175 deputies
in a secret ballot in the 200-seat lower house.
Mr. Křeček says he will defend the rights of the majority population and has said for instance that Romanies should take care of their own rights. Opposition parties have criticised his election, with the leader of TOP 09, Markéta Pekarová-Adamová saying he would debase the office of ombudsman.
Supporters of Mr. Křeček, who was nominated by President Miloš Zeman, say he is familiar with the institution, having previously worked there, and will help return it to its original mission.
Prague saw the largest amount of new housing construction projects per
person in 2019, with 4.39 flats being built for every 1000 residents, newly
released data released by the Czech Statistics Office shows.
Meanwhile the region with the lowest construction level was Ustí nad Labem, where just 1.11 new flats began construction last year. However, that same region had the highest number of new family houses, which made up 96 percent of all new construction. Overall, the amount of new flats begun last year was the highest since 2008.
Reconstructions and annexes were not taken into account during the statistic.
Czech MPs are electing a new ombudsman this Wednesday. From the original
pool of three candidates for the post of public advocate, two have advanced
through the first stage of voting: Stanislav Křeček, a former MP and
deputy ombudsman and Vít Alexander Schorm, who is Czech government
commissioner at the European Court of Human Rights. The winner, who is
likely to be announced after a second round of voting during the evening
hours will replace Anna Šabatová, who has been ombudswoman since 2014.
The anti-government protest movement Million Moments for Democracy wrote on on its website on Wednesday morning that it will organise a demonstration if Mr Křeček is given the job.
Czech car manufacturer Škoda Auto has announced the name of its first
all-electric car – Enyaq – which is currently in development and should
be put on the market by the end of 2022. According to Škoda’s press
release the word is a combination of the Irish word Enya, which means
“source of life”, and the typical last letter of its SUV models – Q.
The company’s sales and marketing lead Alain Favey says that Škoda is aiming for the most popular segment – SUV’s – in order to extend eMobility among the largest possible group of consumers.
The global real estate investment fund of the Italian insurer Generali will
purchase Prague’s iconic brutalist shopping centre Kotva for more than
CZK 3.5 billion, the daily Hospodářské Noviny reported on Wednesday.
According to the paper it is the largest transaction on the Czech real
estate market this year.
The current owner PSN bought the property in 2016 for CZK 2 billion.
Leading representatives of the Czech and Slovak pop music scene will come
together to honour the deceased “Sinatra of the East” Karel Gott
through a special concert in Prague’s O2 Arena on December 15. The form
of the concert was determined by Karel Gott himself before he died,
according to his wife Ivana.
Aside from featuring performances of Gott’s most famous hits, the concert will also include a check donation for the support of lymphoma and leukaemia disease research at the Faculty of Medicine of Charles University and the General Faculty Hospital in Prague. Ticket sales are set to begin on February 15.
Karel Gott died of acute leukaemia in October 2019. During his career his albums sold in the tens of millions across countries including Russia and Germany.
Scientists from the Institute of Molecular Genetics of the Czech Academy of
Sciences have bred a genetically modified chicken that is immune to the
avian retrovirus known as ALV-J, which causes tumours and immunosuppression
in infected chickens.
Jiří Hejnar, one of the geneticists from the institute, told Czech Radio that the new discovery could help strengthen resistance to the virus particularly in Asian farms and that the concept the scientists used could also be applied to other viral infections such as bird flu.
How to specifically implement the method in practice is still being discussed.
President Miloš Zeman’s statement that he had fired his former advisor
Zdeněk Šarapatka for incompetence was wrong and the state will have to
issue an official apology on his behalf, the District Court for Prague 1
ruled on Wednesday.
The president’s comment was made in the weekly interview show “Week With the President” on TV Barrandov in 2017. Mr Šarapatka subsequently filed a lawsuit proving he had sent a resignation letter and subsequently left after a mutual agreement.
The apology will be issued by the Ministry of Finance, because the head of state cannot be sued personally.
Around 50,000 trees in the South Bohemian forest of Šumava have been
damaged as a result of the strong winds that swept through the Czech
Republic on Monday and Tuesday. The exact extent of damages is still being
estimated by foresters, but it seems that the strong winds did not cause
heavy damage in any specific part of the park, Blanka Müllerová from the
Šumava National Park told the Czech News Agency on Wednesday.
The Czech Republic saw winds at the speed of up to 180 kilometres per hour in places as the wind storm known as “Sabine” passed through the country. However, according to Pavel Šimandl from the Czech Hydrometeorological Institute, the winds were not strong enough to be classified as a hurricane force.