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President nominates Mateusz Morawiecki as new Polish prime minister

Leszek Szymański/PAP

Andrzej Duda, Poland’s president, has officially nominated Mateusz Morawiecki as the new Polish prime minister following the general elections last month.

Earlier on Monday, Morawiecki submitted his government’s resignation in the new Sejm, lower house of parliament, which convened for the first time at noon on Monday.

After the ruling socially-conservative Law and Justice (PiS) won the October 15 election but lost their parliamentary majority, three main opposition groupings, hope to form a coalition government under the leadership of Donald Tusk, leader of Civic Coalition, the biggest of the three parties.

But on November 6, Duda announced he would give the mission of leading the new Polish government to a PiS candidate, Morawiecki, although his chances to win a vote of confidence in parliament are close to none, as all the other parties have ruled out their support for him.

Now, within 14 days of his nomination, the new prime minister has to present the government’s action plan to the Sejm along with a motion for a vote of confidence.

The Sejm passes a vote of confidence by an absolute majority of votes in the presence of at least half of the statutory number of MPs.

“We now have time to form a government …and I want to invite everyone to the coalition of Polish affairs,” Morawiecki told the Sejm after he resigned.

He also invited those who will build the parliamentary majority to join him in forming the government.

But a vote in parliament for a new Sejm speaker earlier on Monday confirmed who is really in power in the new lower house, with the opposition bloc’s Szymon Holownia receiving 265 votes against 193 cast for PiS’s Elzbieta Witek.

If Morawiecki is unable to muster a majority and win a vote of confidence within two weeks, parliament will vote to forward an alternative head of government.

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