After two failed attempts, Andrej Bajuk was approved by parliament this week as Slovenia's new Prime Minster. The final tally was 46 for, 44 against. Bajuk now has 15 days to form a caretaker government and to nominate his candidates for the ministerial positions to parliament. Bajuk is a 56-year old economist affiliated with the new SLS+SKD Slovene People's Party. He replaces Janez Drnovšek, who has held the post for the past eight years.
On Wednesday, Slovenia became a permanent member of the United Nations Commission on Sustainable Development. Minister of the Environment Emil Ferjančič addressed the Commission on Sunday with a speech on sustainable tourism. The Commission is charged with enacting Agenda 21, adopted at a conference in Rio de Janeiro in 1992.
May Day was celebrated across the country on Monday. Festivities were held in Ljubljana at Rožnika including a traditional kres, or bonfire, Sunday night. Ljubljana mayor Viktorija Potočnik was the key-note speaker the following day. More than one thousand people attended the kres and other festivities at Murska Subota. The day's events were mostly sponsored by trade unions across the country.
The Ljubljana City Council shot down a proposed law on local self-administration this week. The proposed law would have given the mayor far-reaching powers concerning the municipal budgetary process. The City Council determined that the law was not in accordance with the principles of the State.
The new feature film V Petek Zvečer (On Friday Night) was released in Ljubljana this week. The film was written by Aleš Blatnik and directed by Danijel Srak. V Petek Zvečer premiered last month at the Festival of Slovene Film held in Portorož.
Ljubljana club "K4" hosted a multi-media release party for the new issue (Number 26) of the comic strip magazine Stripcore on Thursday. The new issue follows Stripcore's highly succesful exhibition of Slovene cartoonists at the most prominent Italian comic strip festival Expocartoon last month in Rome. The magazine is dedicated to publishing new Slovene cartoonists, but the new issue also features foreign cartoonists who were introduced to Stripcore at an international festival in France.
The fourth international festival of young independent artists, "Break 21," will take place at venues all over Ljubljana from 10 to 18 May. The festival will present works in various media, including jewelry, fashion, on-line art, music, short - and experimental film, comic strips, visual arts, and theatre. "Break 21" was organized by the University Student Organization. Artists from 28 countries will participate.
The final plans for this year's Rock Otolčec festival were relased this week. Of more than one hundred entries, 45 were selected to play clubs across the country. From that, nine new bands were chosen to play the festival. The festival will take place in Novo Mesto on 8 and 9 July.
Brian Požun, 6 May 2000