After the big win of The Greens in Austria in the national election, it seems that Austria’s Parliament will now have two Bosnia-born women lawmakers, MP from the party Alma Zadic told N1 on Tuesday.
“It seems that another one from our Green Party will come, Vedrana Ribo. She told me yesterday that she entered the Parliament, so now we will have two Bosnian women there,” Zadic, who was born in Tuzla, Bosnia, revealed.
Bad policies and racism are the reasons why the Freedom Party (FPO) and the Social Democratic Party (SPO) did so badly in the election in Austria, Zadic told N1, adding that this is probably why her party, The Greens, did so well.
Heinz-Christian Strache, the former Vice-Chancellor from the FPO, resigned in May over a video showing him in what appears to be an offer of government contracts to a woman who claimed to be a Russian investor and the niece of an oligarch. Austrian President Alexander Van der Bellen called for the snap election because of the scandal.
“The Austrian People’s Party won because the right-wingers (Freedom Party of Austria) lost, Strache’s party lost. He was involved in scandals, corruption, which emerged seven das ahead of the election. Those who voted for them now vote for the Austrian People’s Party (OVP),” Zadic told N1.
“We, the Greens, won because our Social Democrats did badly,” she said, adding that there will be “big changes in the coming weeks.”
She predicted that new people will emerge from the SPO since the party did so badly in the election.
Zadic reminded of when she spoke in Parliament and lawmakers from the FPO and the OVP shouted “We are not in Bosnia” and “Alma, you are safe with me.”
“The strongest sanction against them came from the people, as a lot of journalists said this was racism. So, there have not been any such comments since then, as journalists and the people raised their voices against it,” Zadic said, adding that this could be seen best in the numerous comments targeting the FPO and the OVP on social media.
However, she said that the right-wing is on the rise in Austria.
Zadic also commented on possible future coalitions of the OVP, the party of Sebastian Kurz.
“Kurz will be the Prime Minister, he will have the opportunity to form the government. I think he will continue forward with nationalists, but there is also a chance he might go with us, the Greens;” Zadic said.
She explained that there are “a lot of differences” between Kurz’s views and those of the Greens and predicted that it will become difficult.
“The people want change, and they voted for that change on Sunday,” she said. “Kurz himself is very positive, I know he wants progress, but I know that if he goes with the nationalists - this will not happen.”
As for Bosnia and Herzegovina, Zadic said membership in the EU should be the country’s top priority, adding that the lack of work on that is “catastrophic.” A lot has to be invested in order for the region to join the EU in the next few years, she said.
Life is much better for Bosnians living in Austria than it was decades ago, she explained.
“Our people used to work the worst jobs, they couldn’t deal with racism. Now a lot of our younger educated people are serving offices,” she said.