Italian president Georgio Napolitano has said he will make a decision on Saturday on the future of the government after Romano Prodi’s centre-left coalition resigned on Wednesday. It follows two days of consultations with party leaders from the fallen alliance’s various parties. Romani Prodi, who has stayed on in a caretaker role as prime minister, stepped down after losing a crucial foreign policy vote in the Senate. It is now up to him to convince Napolitano he can muster enough support to lead a new government.
Former premier and opposition leader Silvio Berlusconi says he is very worried at the prospect of Prodi returning to power. He is calling for an early election. “We don’t want a repeat of this government which has already done enough harm by undermining Italy’s credibility abroad, increasing taxes, destroying reforms put in place by the previous government and stopping public planning projects from going ahead,” said Berlusconi.
According to experts, the prospect of an early election is unlikely. But even if the president does ask Prodi back, he would still face a confidence vote in both houses which he is far from certain of winning.