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HN: ANO candidates may undergo psychological tests

ČTK |
30 July 2015

Prague, July 29 (CTK) - The Czech government ANO movement of Andrej Babis wants its candidates for the 2016 regional elections to undergo psychological tests in order to learn about their loyalty in reaction to problems with rebels in local branches, daily Hospodarske noviny (HN) writes Wednesday.

The idea is being promoted by ANO deputy chairman Jaroslav Faltynek.

The measure should prevent the situations where rebellious ANO politicians vote at variance with the party discipline, HN says.

"I can imagine that the first ten people on the lists of candidates in each region would undergo psychological tests," Faltynek told HN, adding that he had also undergone them as a top manager of Babis's Agrofert food-processing concern.

Faltynek presented his idea at a recent meeting of the ANO leadership that debated rebels in its branches in Usti nad Labem, north Bohemia, and Ceske Budejovice, south Bohemia. The leadership then abolished the former organisation and expelled several disloyal members from the latter, HN writes.

Another ANO deputy head, Brno Mayor Petr Vokral, demands a better testing of the election candidates through psychological tests, too.

"Personnel policy is one of the key areas on which ANO will have to focus," Vokral told HN.

Other members of the ANO leadership agree with the intention to more thoroughly check the candidates for regional election in general terms, but they are not sure whether exactly psychological tests are the best method.

"I would not put such a strong emphasis on psychological tests since not even they can really reveal what people are," ANO deputy chairwoman Jaroslava Jermanova said.

Deputy PM and finance minister Babis did not comment on the idea at the movement's meeting and he did not react to HN's question about psychological tests either.

HN writes that psychological tests were applied in politics in the past by Vit Barta when he was recruiting people for his Public Affairs (VV). It entered parliament for the first time in the mid-2010 general election and joined the coalition government, but it split and ended up in opposition in 2012.

Then MP Kristyna Koci, who left the VV, explained that Barta had not used traditional psychological diagnostics. He rather wanted to find out what counted for much with various persons - whether money, high posts or gifts, she added.

"A high-quality psychological testing is a commonly used and reasonable tool in firms. In spite of its positive aspects, I consider the introduction of psychological tests in our movement too risky. The opposition, headed by [TOP 09 deputy chairman Miroslav] Kalousek, would immediately accuse us of spying on and sorting out people," MP Martin Komarek, member of the ANO leadership, pointed out.

Babis's movement was considering using psychological tests shortly after its establishment in 2012, but it gave up the plan later, HN writes.

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