People's Party (Montenegro)
|Founded||1906, 1990, 1997|
|International affiliation||European Christian Political Movement|
|Politics of Montenegro
The People's Party (Serbian: Народна странка, НС; Narodna Stranka, NS) is an opposition populist political party in Montenegro. Until 2009 it was the main conservative party in Montenegro, as opposed to ruling party and its main opposition, both of which were socialist orientated.
The party is led by Predrag Popović.
The Assembly of Montenegro was formed as per the 1905 Constitution. The People's Party of Montenegro was first formed in 1906, when all MPs of the Assembly of Montenegro (elected in 1905 for the Constitutional Assembly) decided to form a club which would oppose the absolutist rule of Prince (later King) Nikola I Petrovic-Njegos. The parliament had only fictional authority of overseeing, while Nikola held all power, as per the 1905 Constitution of the Princedom of Montenegro; this was challenged by the Parliament. The Club of members of the Montenegrin Parliament was renamed to People's Party in 1907.
The Party's goals were establishing democracy in Montenegro by transferring rule from the Monarch to the people, unification with Serbia and liberation of the rest of the Serb and South Slavic-populated lands under the Ottoman Empire and the Habsburg Monarchy. Their other aims were education and enlightenment of the people.
In September 1907 the People's Party decided to boycott the elections as a mark of protest against Nicholas' bad relations with Serbia. Prince Nikola formed the True People's Party (Права народна странка, Prava narodna stranka) from his personal supporters that, as the sole option on the elections, were elected to the Parliament. The pravaši supported Nicholas' rule and proclaimed him King in 1910.
At the 1913 elections, both Montenegrin parties ran, and the People's Party defeated the Rightist People's Party and won an outstanding victory, winning most of the Parliament's mandates. In the wake of the forthcoming Great War, the True People's Party rejoined the main People's Party and altered its program to include unification of Montenegro with Serbia.
It renewed its work in 1990, after a multi-party system was introduced in Montenegro.
The People's Party opposed Slobodan Milošević's regime in Serbia and his supporters in Montenegro during the 1990s. It joined DPS and SDP on 1998 election, and it participated in Government with the two until 2001. But, when DPS and SDP openly stated that they are proponents of full Montenegrin independence, People's Party of Montenegro left the coalition and the Government.
Afterwords, it was mostly in coalition with pro-union with Serbia parties. After the referendum the People's Party refused to acknowledge the result due to many proofs of rigging, as blackmails, buying votes and voters' lists irregularities. However, it accepts the existing status. Its goal is to remove Milo Đukanović from power, and improve relations with Serbia. People's Party is nurturing history, tradition, and culture of the Petrović Dynasty, when they consider Montenegro was a Serbian national state. The motto of the People's Party is that the right on life, freedom, property and faith is inalienable.
The People's Party is in the process of reaching observer membership in the European People's Party and International Democrat Union. As of 2007 the People's Party has membership in the European Christian Political Movement.