General Petr Pavel has challenged ANO chairman Andrej Babiš to a duel between the presidential candidates. Pavel was intrigued that Babiš presented himself as a crisis manager in the campaign, and therefore reminded him that his government failed to solve the COVID crisis.
Babiš is not yet going to debate with Pavel. The proposal has also attracted the attention of other contenders for the post of head of state.
“I have to say that it is your way of dealing with the COVID crisis, which resulted in even more chaos and uncertainty, that led me to the decision to offer my service to the people again,” the retired general said his appeal posted on social media.
Pavel says he has been through many crises in the Czech Republic and abroad during his career and would therefore like to face Babiš “in a direct debate” so that people can compare the experiences of the two candidates.
Babiš has not yet responded to the challenge, but according to Novinek, he does not intend to accept it.
According to polls, Babiš and Pavel are among the favorites for the presidential election. Neither of them took part in the presidential candidates’ debate on Wednesday, which took place at Prague’s law school.
Neruda: I’ll whistle for you
Danuše Nerudová, an economist who aspires to become the first woman to lead the Czech Republic and, according to polls, has a chance of advancing to at least the second round, offered to be a referee for Babiš and Pavel in the discussion below their post.
“I will whistle for you. Hopefully, the Czech Republic will win,” she said of the challenge.
Another possible candidate, Josef Středula, took a dig at the challenge, writing on Twitter that the Czech Republic deserved better than “a duel between two prominent figures of the past regime.” However, the union leader has not yet submitted enough signatures from citizens or members of parliament.
The people will decide on the new head of state in mid-January. The new president will take office in early March.