Slovenian Prime Minister Miro Cerar tendered his resignation Wednesday after a court annulled the result of a referendum in the latest blow to his crisis-hit government, months ahead of planned elections.
“The forces of the past do not allow us to work for future generations,” Cerar told a press conference. “I am tendering my resignation.”
Earlier Wednesday the constitutional court invalidated the result of a referendum which approved a flagship government infrastructure project to upgrade transport links to Koper port on the Adriatic coast.
The project was estimated to cost around one billion euros and the government had hoped to start it before the summer.
The referendum, held in September 2017, resulted in a vote in favour of the building of a new railway line to service the town, Slovenia’s only major commercial port.
The constitutional court found that the government had not acted with due impartiality as it spent public money to back a yes vote for the scheme.
The ruling was the latest blow for Cerar, whose Modern Centre Party (SMC) was bracing itself for difficult parliamentary elections due in June or July.
Former law professor Cerar, 54, took office in 2014 when SMC scored a stunning electoral victory just one month after being created, having vowed to lead Slovenia back from the edge of economic crisis.
The country was plunged into recession in 2012-13 by a crisis in its banking sector but last year registered growth of five per cent, its highest level in ten years.
However, recent months have seen several crises pile up as the government approaches the end of its term.