Radan Kanev, leader of minority opposition party the Democrats for a Strong Bulgaria, has apologised to a local television station for using vulgar language about Prime Minister Boiko Borissov while taking part in a live broadcast on October 17.
Kanev referred to Borissov as “Uncle C*ck” – the latter an impolite reference to the defining part of male anatomy – while being interviewed by Nova Televizia.
Kanev, whose DSB is a member of the Reformist Bloc but which unlike the rest of the bloc is in opposition to the Borissov government, lashed out at bloc leadership and Cabinet ministers who had kowtowed when confronted by Borissov at a special Cabinet meeting on October 14.
Borissov called the Cabinet meeting to confront the Reformist Bloc Cabinet ministers about whether the bloc was in government or opposition. He challenged them to show, when Parliament holds a special sitting on October 18, where the bloc stood.
Cabinet ministers from bloc vowed loyalty to him and his government and in some cases directly apologised.
Kanev told Nova Televizia, “The Reformist Bloc has no leader to tell Borissov, ‘Come on, Uncle Cock, who are you treating like this? This isn’t your ‘hood and it isn’t the 1990s’.”
A few hours later, Kanev posted on Facebook an apology for the language – but underlined that his apology was directed only to morning talk show host Viktor Nikolaev and the viewers of Nova Televizia.
“I grew up in the 1990s and I am deeply convinced by experience that mutra insolence should not be responded to by turning the other cheek,” Kanev said. “Mutra” is a term commonly applied to gangsters who emerged in post-communist Bulgaria in the 1990s.
“I know that there’s a time when cultured people should respond respond blow for blow – to mockery, to racketeering – with strength. In the name of their dignity, of their families and children. But that does not justify the use of obscene words on a morning broadcast show, even as a reference to the creative work of (Bulgarian rapper) Itso Hazarta. Anyway, I do not always say what I think in front of children. I am sorry for the expression, but not for the meaning,” Kanev said.
Kanev said in the interview that he regretted the role that the Reformist Bloc people had chosen for themselves. Borissov had summoned them as if he was a “boss” and chided them one by one, “but he is not their boss,” Kanev said.
The episode came the same day that the leader of one of the Reformist Bloc’s constituent parties, Meglena Kouneva of the Citizens for Bulgaria Movement, said that should bloc presidential candidate Traicho Traikov perform poorly in the November 2016 elections, her party would withdraw from the government.