Italy : New Elections In The Horizon
It follows the collapse of the coalition government headed by independent Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte.
Italy’s out-going Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte.
Italy’s Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte has resigned. The head of Government announced his resignation on Tuesday, August, 20, 2019 accusing the Interior Minister, Matteo Salvini of being behind the political crisis in Italy because of personal and party interest.
Addressing the Senate, Prime Minister Conte said, Mr. Salvini the head of the League Party has been looking for a pretext to return to the polls since his party's success in European elections in May.
Matteo Salvini, the leader of the nationalist League Party who had tabled a no-confidence motion against Prime Ministers Giuseppe Conte, has been accused by other members of the coalition of calling for a new government in an effort to continue to ride high on his popularity within Italy. He had been portrayed as a strongman domestically after refusing to let migrants fleeing from Africa and elsewhere to set foot on Italian soil.
Reacting to accusations levied against him by the outgoing Prime Minister, the leader of the League Party Matteo Salvini said, "I did not speak ill of colleagues, but as minister of the interior I delivered a safer Italy in the past year. I am not afraid of the judgement of Italians," he added.
Fourteen months ago, the League and the anti-establishment Five Star Movement formed a coalition to govern with Mr. Conte as an independent Prime Minister after the League and the Five Star Parties grabbed 34% and 17 % of votes in Italy respectively.
Though the Italian President Sergio Mattarella has accepted the resignation of Mr. Conte and began consulting party leaders yesterday, August 21, 2019, he has however asked the outgoing PM to remain in office while the discussions continue. He will first hold official meetings with Italy's former President Giorgio Napolitano, then with the speakers of the Senate and the Chamber of Deputies, and lastly with representatives of all the other political parties. At the end of these discussions, if there is no political will to form a new government, the president will dissolve the parliament and call early elections by October 2019.
It should be noted that it is not the first time Italy is facing political crisis that have led to the resignation of the Prime Minister. For over a decade now the country has witnessed several crisis which have led to the formation of a grand coalition or without a Government for months.