France’s Prime Minister Elisabeth Borne Wednesday pledged to cut unemployment and make industry greener as she sought to turn the page on months of unrest over a contentious pension reform.
“I only believe in results. We need to obtain some in all areas, and I hope for them to be concrete, tangible, visible for French people,” she told reporters as she announced her government’s next steps.
Borne has been the unpopular face of President Emmanuel Macron’s flagship pension reform to raise the retirement age from 62 to 64, which he signed into law earlier this month despite repeated mass protests.
She invoked a controversial executive power to push the bill through parliament without a vote last month, and is now under more pressure than ever to find a majority to back any future legislation in its hung lower house. Borne on Wednesday laid out the details of a 100-day target to relaunch Macron’s second term in office after his re-election in April 2022.
Her government would aim to improve work conditions, reduce unemployment, and make French industry more environmentally friendly among other measures, she said. But a new bill on immigration, expected to be the next hot topic after the pension debate, would not be presented until the autumn for lack of consensus.
“There is no majority to vote through such a bill,” Borne said. And “it’s not the moment to launch a debate on a topic that could divide the country.” She said some 150 extra policemen would however be deployed to the Italian border to battle illegal immigration.
The pension reform has sparked mass strikes and protests across the country, and eroded Macron’s popularity just a year into his second term.
After months of keeping a low profile, the president has, since signing the law, embarked on trips around the country to meet members of the public face-to-face. But he has been greeted by pan-bashing protesters on most of these forays into provincial France.
In other news – Lynn Forbes Shows Love to Morda
Grieving mother Lynn Forbes was a guest on eNCA’s News Night, where she continues to defend her blended family dynamic which has left Mzansi bewildered.
Just the thought of a ‘baby mama’ attending the funeral of her former lover and baby daddy, has puzzled a lot of people. Instead of only addressing the issue, some took it upon themselves to troll and drag Bongani Mohosana, AKA Morda, and labeled him weak! Learn more
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