Prague, April 21 (CTK) – Former head of the Czech Academy of Sciences Jiri Drahos will start collecting signatures on the petition for his presidential candidacy on Monday, on the same day as President Milos Zeman who will seek re-election.
Out of the three favourites of the election, lyricist and businessman Michal Horacek did so at Easter. He has already collected thousands of signatures for his bid.
The contenders must gather at least 50,000 signatures. In addition, they can be proposed by a group of at least 20 members of the Chamber of Deputies or at least ten senators.
The first round of the presidential race will take place on January 19-20 at the latest. The exact date will be declared by the Senate chairman.
Other contenders, whose chances are very small, include doctor and civic activist Marek Hilser, former Public Affairs deputy Otto Chaloupka, businessman Igor Sladek and artist Emil Adamec as well as former head of the office of prime minister Jiri Rusnok, Karel Stogl, and activist Jana Yngland Hruskova.
“I will start the collection of the signatures on Monday April 24, symbolically on Saint George Day,” Jiri (George) Drahos said.
“For me, the date is a commitment to fight as bravely and honestly as the patron of knights and soldiers,” he added.
“The volunteers can apply for work at my web page. As of Monday, there will be all the necessary information,” Drahos said.
Drahos, 68, is a member of many scientific councils, international journals’ editorial boards and Czech expert associations such as the Czech Society of Chemical Engineering and the University of Chemistry and Technology board.
He is the holder of the Medal of Merit, bestowed on him by president Vaclav Klaus in 2012. Earlier this year, a book of Drahos’s memoirs appeared in Czech bookshops, written by Jiri Padevet in the form of interviews and entitled The Science of Life.