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Tabloid king turned politician pledging war on white-collar crime

Ljubljana, 14 May - The list of media owner Bojan Požar is among the many political newcomers hoping to boost their election chances with a dose of populism. Unabashed by criticism over his coupling of journalism and politics, Požar is proposing heavy tax cuts while announcing a war on white collar crime and the current judiciary.

Presentation of candidates on the List of Journalist Bojan Požar
Photo: Anže Malovrh/STA

One of Slovenia's best known tabloid journalists and the owner of the successful news portal, Požar first indicated he was moving into politics when he established in July last year a movement called A Second Chance, Your Future.

Požar, also the author of the talk show VV faktor on the small private broadcaster TV3, made the next step in February, as he became the president of a local party from Maribor and changed its name to the List of Journalist Bojan Požar.

A pioneer of the Slovenian tabloid scene, Požar is officially a political novice, but he built the success of portal on leaking political rumours.

Although his political views are hard to pin down, he entered the arena by positioning himself as an environmentalist during the debates accompanying an investment by the automotive giant Magna.

Environmental topics also feature on the Požar list campaign platform, the bulk of the 33 programme points is however about tax cuts and a smaller but efficient state. He would drastically cut taxation on personal income, capping it at 25%.

While pledging a strong push against white-collar crime as the no. 1 item on his agenda, Požar would reduce the workforce in the judiciary by 50% or abolish all higher courts as well as end life tenure for judges.

Požar would shrink the workforce in the public sector by 30% within two years. He would refer patients in waiting lines to private healthcare providers and have the bill covered by the public health purse.

He is also in favour of beefing up border controls to address illegal migration and of denying the right to social transfers to persons residing in the country less than three years.

The Bojan Požar list would legalise marijuana, introduce a public registry of paedophiles and stiffer sentences for violent and sexual crimes, as well as put penalties for animal torture on par with those for people torture. Animal slaughter using halal methods would be prohibited.

It would also force kindergartens and primary schools to buy food from Slovenian farmers, have the state subsidise 50% of electric vehicle purchases and boost the state funding of sports facilities.

The List of Journalist Bojan Požar, which has been polling at between 1% and 2%, will field 60 candidates in the upcoming general election, 26 of whom are women.

The slate will include the proponent of the referendum on the Divača-Koper rail track law, Vili Kovačič, the former president of the Association of Journalists and Commentators (ZNP), Tino Mamić, and Požar's partner Barbra Drnač, a journalist and dance critic.

© STA, 2018