Czech PM Babis to form new govt before next presidential term begins

The Czech prime minister is rushing to form a new government, possibly by the end of February, before a new presidential term begins. Andrej Babis’ minority cabinet lost a parliamentary confidence vote this week. He denies allegations that, as a businessman a decade ago, he hid ownership of a firm to get a €2 million (US$2.4 million) subsidy meant for small businesses, Reuters said. The two candidates in the January 26-27 run-off presidential vote have opposing views on Babis, the country’s second-richest person. Incumbent Milos Zeman has promised to give Babis a second try. The other candidate, academic Jiri Drahos, says it would be unacceptable to have a prime minister facing police charges. Babis told Mlada Fronta Dnes daily on Thursday that a political crisis could arise if he does not get a second chance to form a government.