Edition 1484
21 July 2018
Edition: 1484

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Parties back president’s call to ‘reinvent’ country after 2017 failure

by TPN/Lusa, in News · 04-01-2018 14:17:00 · 0 Comments

Portugal’s political parties have welcomed the New Year’s message by the president, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, in which he called for 2018 to be a “year of the reinvention” of citizens’ confidence in the state.

Parties back president’s call to ‘reinvent’ country after 2017 failure

He warned that the public needed to have the certainty that, “in critical moments, the essential missions of the state do not fail.”
This year’s traditional message was delivered on Monday from the president’s home in Cascais, after an urgent surgery a few days earlier.
Last year, he said was “strange and contradictory” but was marked “above all by the tragedies of the fires”.
After citing the “comforting joys” and “deep sadness” that dominated 2017, the head of state spoke of the “future”, demanding that 2018 be “the year of reinvention”, which he said was “more than mere material and spiritual reconstruction.”
He called for the tragedies of last year to be “converted ... into a mobilising reason for change.”
The secretary-general of the opposition PSD, Matos Rosa, on Tuesday agreed with the president, saying that it was “undeniable that the state failed people.”
The Left Bloc, which provides the governing Socialists with support, also agreed with the need for Portugal to reinvent itself, given that the state failed in the question of the fires, but stressed the need to consolidate the economic progress made during 2017.
In related news, Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa, has vetoed alterations to political party funding, his office has announced.
A note published on Tuesday evening said he had sent the law back to parliament because of a lack of public scrutiny on how the parties get their funding.
MPs now have two options; they either alter the law to overcome the president’s doubts or confirm it with at least a two-thirds majority.
The law was approved in parliament with the votes off all the parties except for the centre-right CDS and the People, Animals and Nature party.
If MPs confirm the law, the president is obliged to sign it.
One of the main stumbling blocks in the new law is the end to any limits on VAT-free activities, which had been limited to party activities.
Under the new law, parties can run any activity without having to pay VAT, similar to legislation applied to charities and schools.

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Edition 1484
21 July 2018
Edition: 1484

Read this week's issue online exactly as it appears in print.

Twitter

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