Roma Civic Initiative
The Roma Civic Initiative (Rómska občianska iniciatíva - ROI) is a Roma minority political party, now based in Slovakia
The Slovak Republic is a landlocked state in Central Europe. It has a population of over five million and an area of about . Slovakia is bordered by the Czech Republic and Austria to the west, Poland to the north, Ukraine to the east and Hungary to the south...


The party was originally established in Czechoslovakia
Czechoslovakia or Czecho-Slovakia was a sovereign state in Central Europe which existed from October 1918, when it declared its independence from the Austro-Hungarian Empire, until 1992...

 on November 21, 1989, immediately following the Velvet Revolution
Velvet Revolution
The Velvet Revolution or Gentle Revolution was a non-violent revolution in Czechoslovakia that took place from November 17 – December 29, 1989...

. As part of the Civic Forum
Civic Forum
The Civic Forum was a political movement in the Czech part of Czechoslovakia, established during the Velvet Revolution in 1989...

, and with lawyer Emil Ščuka as its leader, the party managed to win seats in all the branches of government during Czechoslovakia's first post-communist democratic elections in 1990. The party was naturally split during the Dissolution of Czechoslovakia
Dissolution of Czechoslovakia
The dissolution of Czechoslovakia, which took effect on 1 January 1993, was an event that saw the self-determined separation of the federal state of Czechoslovakia. The Czech Republic and Slovakia, entities which had arisen in 1969 within the framework of Czechoslovak federalisation, became...

, but internal divisions led to further splits, and the party eventually dissolved. In the Czech Republic
Czech Republic
The Czech Republic is a landlocked country in Central Europe. The country is bordered by Poland to the northeast, Slovakia to the east, Austria to the south, and Germany to the west and northwest....

 Ščuka maintained the leadership of the ROI until 2001, while also becoming General Secretary of the International Romani Union
International Romani Union
The International Romani Union is an organization active for the rights of the Romani people. Its seat is in Prague....

. The party was finally removed from the rolls of Czech political parties in 2005.

In Slovakia, the party re-emerged and re-registered itself in 2005, to join other Roma parties such as
Rómska Inteligencia za Spolunažívanie
Romska Inteligencia za Spolunazivanie
Romska Inteligencia za Spolunazivanie is a political party of the Romany minority of Slovakia. Its policies are centre to left-wing with a focus on Romany rights and culture....

, the Strana Ochrany Práv Rómov, the Strana Jednoty Rómov, and the Strana Rómskych Demokratov.
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