Oxford’s political scene jumped to the next level recently when a Christ Church fresher announced he is set to run for the European Parliament.
Jan Nedvídek, who studies PPE, is running as an MEP for the Czech party ODS, known as the Civic Democratic Party in English. Nedvideck is also the current OUCA Political Officer.
The ODS is a centre-right Eurosceptic party, and is a relatively substantial force in Czech politics as it holds 15 seats in both the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate. It currently has 9 MEPs.
When asked why he wanted to run, he said: “So many people complain about the fact that the EU is so far away from us, and that it doesn’t consider the views of the ordinary voters. I was fed up with this kind of talk: what’s the point in complaining if you’re not ready to get up and do something about it?”
“The EU can only be made more efficient and representative if people who work in it want to make it such: and this is why, when the party HQs rang me, I only took a minute to consider their offer.”
Jan castigated the EU as being “ruled by an elite which is led by an integrationist, federalist ideology rather than political pragmatism” and insisted “the parliamentarians in Brussels need to be replaced by people who use their common sense instead of ideology to make decisions”.
“The UK and my own country (the Czech Republic) are both better off in than out, and that is why I reject all efforts to withdraw from the Union.”
Nedvídek conceded he is unlikely to win his election due to the party list system used in European elections. He is placed last on the ODS’ list, so victory for him would require 100% of the electorate to vote for the party.
“As we don’t live under the communist regime anymore, this is not very probable,” he said. “Consequently, I’m not very likely to win this time: however, I shall do my best to make sure that my party gets all the votes it possibly can and wins the election!”
Nedvídek, who was appointed OUCA Political Officer after a disputed election, was congratulated by the official OUCA Twitter account.