Final Word from Thursday, April 4, 2013

Is it less flattering to Karolína Peake or to Martin Kuba to compare the two ministers? They're both extremely ambitious, and neither recognizes the limits to his or her political abilities. Peake ran into a wall at the defense ministry because she tried to buck the system and in doing so almost disrupted some high-value no-bid defense contracts. Kuba risks hitting the same wall in ODS because of his eagerness to use the public-procurement law to make a name for himself. ODS mayors had hoped that a furtive amendment in Parliament could raise the minimum amount needed before a tender must be called (from the current Kč 1m), resulting in a huge increase in the number of no-bid contracts, but Kuba has endangered this by turning the debate on the procurement law into an attention-grabber for his own political career. Raising the no-bid limit will now be very difficult. When Peake endangered the system, she was unceremoniously sacked. Perhaps the difference between the two ministers is that she has already learned her lesson.[Czech Republic LIDEM industry ministry]

Glossary of difficult words

to buck (the system) - to oppose or resist something that seems inevitable or oppressive;

to disrupt - to interrupt an event, activity or process by causing a disturbance or problem;

no-bid - awarded without a competitive bidding process;

furtive - attempting to avoid notice; secretive;

unceremoniously - abruptly or discourteously;

to sack someone - to fire someone.


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