The Democratic Party's leader, Zoran Lutovac, said on Feb. 24 that a decision by the Ministry for State Administration and Local Self-Government to dismiss Branislav Lecic's request to take over the party was expected, but it was deliberately very late to harm the Democrats.
In an interview with the BETA agency, Lutovac said that ministry should have immediately dismissed "forgeries" by former Democrat officials and members trying to take over the party. "The Ministry's decision refers to Branislav Lecic and all those who helped him organize and promote illegal actions. They are no longer members of the party, or a theme for debate for that matter. I hope that after the decision they won't be a media theme either," Lutovac said.
The Democrat leader explained that the party's membership and leadership were consolidated now, allowing for a more decisive reform. Lutovac also promised that the party would abandon the practices that "have repelled voters." When asked by BETA if a united Democratic party was his mission, Lutovac said that the party had already launched the initiative, and that it hadn't abandoned the procedures and principles agreed to that end.