Plaques of the President of the Region for courageous civic attitudes were awarded to three personalities

01. December 2022 13:38, Mgr. Milada Soukupová

Miroslav Skalický, Martin Svoboda and Ludvík Rösch
are this year's recipients of the Honorary Plaque of the President of the Pilsen Region for courageous civic attitudes. The unique honorary plaques were presented to them on Wednesday, November 16, 2022, at the Měšťanská Beseda in Pilsen by the President Rudolf Špoták. The honorary plaque made of pure silver with the portrait of Jan Palach was presented to the awardees for the sixth time. All three of this year’s winners were introduced in special video clips and the atmosphere of the ceremony was complemented by the performance of the singer and songwriter Jiří Dědeček.

“Standing up for your opinion and not being afraid to say it is something I consider important at any time. Taking a stand against the majority and acting according to your convictions requires great inner strength. But often it takes courage to endure the anger and harm that those who have the power at the time can inflict on you. I appreciate all those who have contributed to the efforts to change a totalitarian regime into a democracy. It is thanks to those who, often at great cost, opposed the regime, were persecuted, harassed and persecuted that we can live freely today and decide our own destiny. The regime tried to silence such courageous personalities and intimidate others. It failed because these people inspired many others to have the courage to live in freedom and democracy,” said President of the Region Rudolf Špoták at the ceremony.

The founder of the tradition of awarding honorary plaques is the current Vice-President for Environment and Agriculture Josef Bernard, who was the President of the Pilsen Region in 2017, when the plaques were awarded for the first time. “I wanted to honour personalities who are often forgotten, which is why it is important to remember them and know the historical context that accompanied their lives. Since the award itself is always an extraordinary event, the plaque is also unique. It took almost a year to prepare and design it, and the result is a silver coin with a diameter of 70 mm with a portrait of Jan Palach,” says Josef Bernard adding: “Sometimes we feel that 30 years after the Velvet Revolution we no longer must deal with the consolidation of democracy and freedom in our country. How wrong we are and how foolish we are. The opposite is true. The Cold War has become a digital and information war. The drive to move our country away from Western democracies has been evident in recent years. Let’s not give in. We badly need personalities like this year’s honourees. They are an inspiration to all.”