Postal strike fallout: Finnish government in crisis

A labour dispute over the inadequate payment of postal workers has culminated in a political crisis in Finland. The bone of contention is whether the government knew about the plans of the state postal service to reduce the salaries of more than 700 package sorters. After the postal workers went on strike for several weeks the responsible minister resigned. Should the PM go too?

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Iltalehti (FI) /

This won't be the end of the government

The Social Democrats' coalition partners have no interest in letting the government collapse, Iltalehti argues:

“The weeks of conflict over the postal service, which culminated last Friday in the resignation of the responsible minister Sirpa Paatero, were a pathetic political spectacle put on by Prime Minister Antti Rinne in which Paatero was sacrificed while the other governing parties watched in silence. ... Although the prime minister is now in a difficult position, it's hard to imagine that the Greens - not to mention the Centre Party, which is currently at a low point in the polls - would overthrow the green-tinged coalition. ... A better alternative would be to oust Rinne as prime minister. On the other hand the Greens and the Centre may instead try to wring concessions from the beleaguered leader.”

Ilta-Sanomat (FI) /

Centre Party facing a dilemma

The Centre Party in particular will have difficulties dealing with the fallout of the labour dispute at Finland's state postal service, Ilta-Sanomat concludes:

“Both the Social Democrats and above all the Centre Party need to think about whether Rinne should continue as prime minister. The Centre Party and its leader Katri Kulmuni are in a particularly difficult situation. Rinne guarantees that the Centre Party's objectives will be implemented in the government programme, but on the other hand a shadow will be cast on the Centre Party if it accepts Rinne's statements, especially if it turns out that there are gaps or that the Prime Minister twisted the truth or concealed something.”