Three Candidates Enter the Race to Become SDP President

By 31 January 2016

The race for SDP leadership hots up. 

Deadline for candidacy bids for SDP president expired at midnight. Current party president Zoran Milanović and Primorje-Gorski Kotar County Prefect Zlatko Komadina have been unexpectedly joined by a third candidate. Dušan Polovina Lungo from Zadar has also expressed his interest to run for party president. In addition, he has also applied to be a candidate to become a member of the party Presidency and of the Main Committee. The 56-year-old from Zadar is relatively unknown, but says that this intention is to further democratize the electoral process and relations within SDP, reports Index.hr on January 31, 2016.

All nominations are only preliminary, since each candidate for SDP president must collect a thousand signatures within 30 days. Then the party election campaign will officially start. The new party president will be chosen by a ballot of all party members on 2 April.

Former Assistant Minister of Agriculture Zrinka Starešinić last week announced that she was planning to take part in the election, but at the end of the week she withdrew her candidacy, saying that it was clear that the campaign would be dirty and that she would not be able to protect the privacy of her family.

SDP secretary general Igor Dragovan said yesterday that he expected that the campaign would be based on programs and values, and not on lies and insinuations. "Shame on anyone who threatens. The people I know are not like that. There are no victims of Zlatko Komadina on any cemetery", said Komadina yesterday.

SDP president Zoran Milanović today announced his manifesto for party presidency elections. "Eight years ago I suggested that the party president should be elected by all members of the party and I am very glad that this principle has become a democratic standard below which we cannot go", said Milanović and thanked all those who supported him during the past eight years.

"We are facing elections that will decide the future of SDP. By changing SDP, we are also changing Croatia, and we have shown that clearly in the last four years. SDP which I want to lead needs energy and responsibility to protect civil standards that have only recently been reached. HDZ is threatening us with a conservative revolution. To SDP, I offer myself, my energy, knowledge and fighting spirit", said Milanović introducing his manifesto titled "Our Direction".