Kaczynski announces party's road trip, urges high standards
"Today we are starting a great journey across Poland and a great debate with Poles, Jaroslaw Kaczynski, the leader of the ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party, said at a major political convention in Warsaw on Saturday.
Held under the slogan "There is one Poland," the convention brought together top leaders and politicians from PiS and the broader United Right camp.
"We spoke about a positive change. Yes, the positive change is taking place, but this positive change must by constantly sustained, and support for it must also be maintained, because in public life, in political life, nothing is given once and for all, nothing is given for a long time. We need to keep on working, keep on talking," Kaczynski said.
"We have made some slips and these slips have in a way also translated into support for us," the party leader admitted, but urged the audience not to pay too much attention to opinion polls.
"But this does not mean that we are to underestimate the situation that is a novelty for us. I have warned against it on many occasions, that we may be defeated, although this defeat will be primarily our own defeat of ourselves," the party leader stressed.
"That's why we need an effort, we need this great tour. We want to reach 600 to 700 locations, all the provinces and all the counties, many non-county towns and of course villages. We want to reach (those places) to tell people what we have done, without vanity, calmly," the Law and Justice leader said.
The tour will end in July, he also said.
Referring to the controversial bonuses paid by former PM Beata Szydlo to her ministers, Kaczynski said that "we don't work for ourselves, we work for Poles."
"If a mistake was made here, then it was not made in bad faith, but was still a mistake," Kaczynski admitted while reiterating his plans to cut parliamentary salaries by 20 percent. "The draft law on lowering MPs' salaries is already in the Sejm (lower house - PAP), it has been submitted," he said.
He also reaffirmed his earlier announcements that the ministers will have to pay back their bonuses and vowed to deal with those who use their official positions for their own benefit.
He stressed that "the issue of morality in politics in extremely important."
"In order to win, to continue our project, to reform Poland, we must be a party of clean hands. There will be no tolerance, no second chance for those who make their hands dirty," he concluded.