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Sweden’s First Female PM Resigns On Day One, As Parliament Votes For Budget Drawn By Opposition: Lessons For Africa

The Oasis Reporters


November 27, 2021

Magdalena Andersson.

BBC reports that hours after Sweden’s first ever female prime minister was appointed, she resigned.

Magdalena Andersson, was announced as leader on Wednesday but resigned after her coalition partner quit the government and her budget failed to pass.

Instead, parliament voted for a budget drawn-up by the opposition which includes the anti-immigrant far right.

“I have told the speaker that I wish to resign,” Ms Andersson told reporters.

Her coalition partner, the Greens Party said it could not accept a budget “drafted for the first time with the far-right”.

Ms Andersson said that she hoped to try to become prime minister again as a single party government leader.

“There is a constitutional practice that a coalition government should resign when one party quits,” the Social Democrat said on Wednesday. “I don’t want to lead a government whose legitimacy will be questioned.

The speaker of parliament said he would contact party leaders on the next move.

Ms Andersson was elected as prime minister earlier on Wednesday because under Swedish law, she only needed a majority of MPs not to vote against her.

A hundred years after Swedish women were given the vote, the 54-year-old Social Democrat leader was given a standing ovation by sections of the parliament, or Riksdag.

Her election at the head of a minority government followed an 11th-hour deal with the opposition Left party, in exchange for higher pensions for many Swedes. She also secured the support of coalition partner the Greens.

Of the 349 members of the Riksdag, 174 voted against her. But on top of the 117 MPs who backed Ms Andersson, a further 57 abstained, giving her victory by a single vote.

A former junior swimming champion from the university city of Uppsala, she began her political career in 1996 as political adviser to then-Prime Minister Goran Persson. She has spent the past seven years as finance minister.

Before MPs backed Magdalena Andersson, Sweden was the only Nordic state never to have a woman as PM.

Noteworthy is the fact that the budget the Parliament voted on which the opposition presented, includes the anti-immigrant far right.

The world watches as the far – right continues to inch closer to mainstream politics and their themes contain anti immigration legislation.

Most countries in Europe are beginning to feel deluged by immigrants who are fleeing the turmoil mostly in Africa and the Middle East into the calm and prosperous Europe.

As Europe continues to feel besieged by immigrants, African migrants begin to hold their breath, take time to keep a keen eye on homeland’s politics and economy because if anti immigration rhetoric begins to lead to violence, let there be a prosperous and peaceful home country to flee back to.

It is incumbent upon African leaders to step up above low quality political economic leadership, then make the continent work.

It can be done if Corruption, ethnic chauvinism, parochialism etc and all other vices are kept at bay.

Greg Abolo

Greg Abolo

Blogger at The Oasis Reporters.

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