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New leader for Poland's opposition

Latest update : 2008-06-01

34-year-old Grzegorz Napieralski was elected the leader of Democratic Left Alliance, one of the largest opposition parties in the country. Napieralski was previously the party's secretary general.

One of Poland's main opposition parties voted in 34-year-old Grzegorz Napieralski as its new leader this weekend, in a bid to revamp its image and regain some lost glory.
  
Napieralski, who was previously the Democratic Left Alliance's (SLD) secretary general, scooped 231 of 450 votes at a party congress held Saturday, toppling the party's former leader Wojciech Olejniczak by 21 votes.
  
After two crushing legislative election defeats in 2005 and 2007, the SLD  is looking to restore its glory in a country that is currently lead by conservative President Lech Kaczynski.
  
The leftist party recently broke off its alliance with the Democratic Party bringing together some ex-Solidarity movement eurodeputies, in the short-lived Left and Democrats electoral block. 
  
As the party seeks to reinvent its image, veteran SLD members such as former president Aleksander Kwasniewski and ex-prime minister Jozef Oleksy were not invited to take part in party congress.   
  
With 42 deputies, the SLD is second largest opposition party in the Polish parliament.

Date created : 2008-06-01

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