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Thursday, 8 June 2000

President recalled Deputy Prime Minister Leszek Balcerowicz and Members of the Cabinet

On June 8th, 2000, President of the Republic of Poland Aleksander Kwasniewski recalled the following ministers on the motion of Prime Minister Jerzy Buzek: Leszek Balcerowicz from the post of Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance; Hanna Suchocka from the post of Justice Minister; Tadeusz Syryjczyk from the post of Transport and Maritime Economy Minister. Addressing those gathered, Aleksander Kwasniewski said: "Yesterday, the Prime Minister said: Something bad`s happened. And indeed, the break-up of the majority coalition, which came into being as a result of the 1997 elections, is an important event fraught with many consequences bearing upon the situation in Poland, upon our feelings and evaluations of Poles. Following the debates and opinions which were uttered, I would like to say that I understand the motives which made the Freedom Union leave the government, and I would also like to say that it is undoubtedly part of our common history, part of the democratic principles which we set forth and practice (...) Since the very beginning of Polish changes, Mr Leszek Balcerowicz has been an advocate of the great economic transformations which took place in Poland. He discharged the function of finance minister longest in the third Republic. His name is attached to the changes from the turn of 1989 and 1990. His person is and has been the landmark of Polish transformations and reforms over the past eleven years. I would like to warmly thank for this great effort, for this great contribution, for this great part which Mr Leszek Balcerowicz played in Poland`s contemporary history in conviction these were not the final words, that more than once we will have opportunities to cooperate, be it at parliament, or in other capacities, to carry on this feat which is bringing Poland not only into the 21st century, but also into the group of modern nations and economies of Europe. Much has been already achieved. Certainly, there is much disappointment on this road. Not only Poland is a different country today. It is also a better country, also owing to you (...) In a few days` time, I will hand an act of recall to Minister Onyszkiewicz, and shortly afterwards to Minister Geremek. I am speaking of those persons, who following resignations filed, are leaving the government. I would like to tell all representatives of the Freedom Union that their decision is certainly difficult and weighty and that history will size up what should have been done at that moment. But not plunging into debate which is ahead of us and which, I am convinced, will bring understanding of the reasons motivating you, I would like to say: We thank the Freedom Union, we thank you in person for what you have done for Poland, as Poland has been very much connected with you over the past ten years, with your formation, and it owes you really much (...) Tough tasks lie ahead of the government. This government has been in minority for several dozen hours, which is a natural democratic experience, but not an easy one for that matter. That`s why I would like to express my wish to you, Mr Prime Minister, that the government you are leading be stable, resolved and consistent, that it be open to partners, which is also very important for a minority cabinet, who may help at parliament, that the laws, which are so needed by Poland, by our economy, which serve all of us well, be passed.
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