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MPs applaud long-serving stenographer who turns 90

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Prague, April 5 (CTK) – Czech lawmakers gave a long applause to Jiri Novak, a stenographer who has been working for Czech parliament since 1952, on his 90th birthday at the beginning of the Chamber of Deputies’ session on Tuesday where he turned up to do his job as usual.

Novak started putting down the speeches of deputies and parliamentary guests on the day following his successful passing of a shorthand test, Chamber of Deputies chairman Jan Hamacek said in his speech of congratulations.

“He had the honour to put down the speeches of all Czechoslovak and Czech presidents, beginning with Antonin Zapotocky (1953-1957), and of numbers of ministers and lawmakers, and he has been doing the job until now,” Hamacek said.

“It is also thanks to Novak that thousands of pages of speeches given by us, politicians, have been recorded for history,” Hamacek said.

He described Novak as a noble gentleman well versed in history, philosophy, economy and foreign languages, and with sense of humour.

He also praised Novak’s activities as a teacher.

“Although stenographers are a kind of mute witnesses, who have to see, hear and put down everything without seeking their own visibility, I considered it correct to make an exception,” Hamacek explained, referring to his speech highlighting Novak’s merits.

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