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Poland: Candidates For New Cabinet Announced

Warsaw, 28 October 1997 (RFE/RL) - Polish Prime Minister-designate Jerzy Buzek today announced some of the candidates for ministers in his future cabinet.

Buzek made the statement following a meeting with the Solidarity Electoral Action (AWS) parliamentary group.

Most of the announced candidates are relatively unknown in national politics. Presumably, they could claim professional experience in specific fields.

Among the better knowns are Jacek Janiszewski, who once served as acting head of Agriculture Ministry and is slated now to return to that area. Catholic politicians Ryszard Czarnecki was named to head the European Union Integration Committee. Veteran Solidarity activist Janusz Palubicki was named a candidate to coordinate intelligence services. Palubicki served during recent years as a member of a special commission dealing with intelligence operations.

Buzek said it has not been decided yet who will head the powerful post of Ministry of Interior and Administration. Neither were mentioned the names of candidates for as regards the sensitive ministries of Labor and Economy.

AWS has earlier agreed in negotiations with the junior coalition partner, the Freedom Union (UW), that UW head Leszek Balcerowicz will be a deputy minister and Finance Minister.

In line with the same agreement, the Foreign Ministry is to be taken over by veteran parliamentary UW leader Bronislaw Geremek, the Justice Ministry is to go to former Prime Minister Hanna Suchocka and Janusz Onyszkiewicz, a former defense minister, is slated to take over that position again, while former Solidarity activist from Gdansk Jacek Merkel is listed as head of the Transport Ministry.

Buzek said the full Cabinet will be formally announced on Wednesday and the swearing in ceremony is expected to take place on Friday. But Buzek also hinted that he still faces heavy opposition from conservative groups within AWS to the UW candidacies of Hanna Suchocka and Jacek Merkel.

AWS is an umbrella political coalition consisting of more than 30 separate parties and groups, representing diverse views and policies.