German opposition leaders unite in their critism of Merkel’s coalition government

Accra, June 21,(dpa/GNA) – German industry, union and opposition leaders united on Thursday in their criticism of the coalition government of Chancellor Angela Merkel 100 days after it was sworn in.

Merkel, whose political capital is depleted after her party lost support in a September election, is in her fourth term in office and heads an uneasy alliance between her conservative CDU, its Bavarian counterpart, the CSU, and the centre-left Social Democrats (SPD).

Dieter Kempf, head of Germany’s influential BDI business association, expressed concern about “discord in central questions such as migration,” saying that the lack of stability this caused could damage growth and competitiveness.

Kempf said the German government needed to show leadership in key areas such as “the ongoing trade dispute with the US, as well as European migration policies and the desperately needed development of the eurozone.”

Merkel’s government was out of touch, Reiner Hoffmann of the German Trade Union Confederation (DGB) said. He added that many voters’ everyday experience included “lack of affordable housing, abysmally poor infrastructure, and a partly catastrophic situation in schools.”

According to a poll commissioned by dpa and published on Thursday, just 21 per cent of Germans are happy with their grand coalition.

The YouGov poll of 2,053 respondents taken since Tuesday found that 36 per cent were extremely dissatisfied and 33 per cent dissatisfied with how the coalition.

The poll found that as many as 54 per cent of those who voted for Merkel’s conservative Christian alliance took a negative view, with the figure soaring to 74 per cent among SPD voters.

Christian Lindner, head of the pro-business Free Democrats (FDP), said that “after 100 days of grand coalition, we cannot criticize any of their major plans, because there are none.”

“These are difficult times for the opposition, because the government is its own opposition,” he said.

“The best thing for Germany and the Germans would be if the first 100 days of this government were not followed by another 100 days,” commented Alice Weidel, the head of the biggest opposition party, the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD).

She added that only thing the coalition had achieved in an efficient manner was passing a bill to free up an additional 25 million euros (28.9 million dollars) in taxpayer funding for Germany’s political parties.

Source: Ghana News Agency