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State not responsible for president's comment on aide, top court rules

February 9th, 2021

The Finance Ministry should not have apologised for President Milos Zeman's remarks about his ex-aide Zdenek Sarapatka as Zeman himself bears responsibility for it since it was unrelated to the performance of his presidential duties, the Constitutional Court (US) ruled on Tuesday. The US supported the ministry's complaint and returned the case to a Prague district court. In November 2017, Zeman said on TV Barrandov that when he was prime minister in 1998-2002 he sacked Sarapatka as his aide for incompetence. However, Sarapatka left the Government Office on his own terms at the time. The president cannot be directly sued for a statement related to the performance of his post, which is why the Finance Ministry apologised for it, based on a court verdict.


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