Poland's next leader: government shakeup not good enough

AP News
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Posted: Jun 11, 2015 9:48 AM
Poland's next leader: government shakeup not good enough

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Poland's President-elect Andrzej Duda says the current government shake-up is not enough to restore confidence in the establishment but upcoming elections may bring in leaders "who care for the nation's interest."

Five top government officials resigned unexpectedly Wednesday, including Parliament Speaker Radek Sikorski. All were involved in a 2014 scandal in which ministers' conversations with businessmen and lobbyists were illegally taped in restaurants, and partly leaked to the media.

Secret files from the investigation into the tapings were illegally posted on Facebook this week, four months ahead of a general election, and more material may emerge.

Donald Tusk, who was the party leader and prime minister when the scandal broke, dismissed the interior minister but took no further action against anyone else in the government or his ruling Civic Platform party. Tusk has moved on to the presidency of the European Council, but the party now faces a backlash over his handling of the scandal, just when it needs to improve its image before parliamentary elections in October. It has been in power since 2007.

Duda, who takes office Aug. 6, spoke Thursday to criticize the ruling team.

"I don't think that anyone, seeing all this, can deny that things in Poland are not going well and that the credit of trust in the ruling team has been used up," Duda said.

Duda's surprising win in the May presidential election over the incumbent was seen as a warning to the ruling party ahead of the general election.

"It is possible that soon, power will be in the hands of people who care for the nation's interests and good change will be possible," Duda said, stopping short of a direct endorsement for the conservative opposition Law and Justice party that he came from.

Names of the new ministers in the government shake-up are to be released probably on Monday.