Pro-EU Donald Tusk set to become prime minister of Poland

Pro-EU Donald Tusk set to become prime minister of Poland

WARSAW: Donald Tusk is expected to become Poland’s next prime minister after the incumbent Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki lost a confidence vote in the Polish parliament.

The vote on Monday effectively ends eight years of rule by the nationalist Law and Justice (PiS) party, clearing the way for a broad coalition of pro-European Union parties led by Tusk to take power.

Following the confidence vote, the lower house of parliament – controlled by a pro-EU alliance – will select the next candidate for prime minister.

The power transition comes two months after Poles turned out in huge numbers to vote for change in a national election.

“READY, STEADY, GO!” Tusk wrote on X in anticipation of the vote on Monday.

The parliament is expected to select Tusk as the next prime minister on Monday. He would then address the chamber on Tuesday.

The final act in the transition of power will take place when President Andrzej Duda swears in Tusk and his government, expected on Wednesday.

The reign of the outgoing right-wing populist Law and Justice (PiS) party was marked by numerous disputes with the EU over issues including judicial independence, the rule of law and minority rights, and have led to billions in funds from the bloc being frozen.

“Democracy has won … This is the end of the PiS government,” Tusk told party members at a celebration on Sunday evening.

As a member of the EU and NATO, Poland’s position – shifting away from supporting neighbouring Ukraine and its response to people fleeing the conflict – was being closely watched by allies.

A former European Council President, Tusk intends to move Poland closer to European allies and revive support for Ukraine. His Civic Coalition (KO) party ran with Third Way and the New Left on separate tickets but with a shared commitment to restoring ties with Europe.

Tusk has said he would seek to unblock about 110 billion euros ($118bn) of European Union funds earmarked for Poland, which have been frozen due to rule-of-law concerns, from day one if he heads a new government.

Courtesy: aljazeera