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Not gone yet: Merkel to work on as chancellor with ‘full energy’

Outgoing German Chancellor Angela Merkel is not rushing out of the door just yet, even with elections just one-and-a-half weeks away.

Berlin, 15 September 2021 (dpa/MIA) — Outgoing German Chancellor Angela Merkel is not rushing out of the door just yet, even with elections just one-and-a-half weeks away.

According to her spokesperson, Merkel will go about her business “with full energy” until her last day in office.

In Germany, this means until a new head of government is in place.

Experience of previous coalition negotiations — the last ones in 2017-18 took five-and-a-half months — means that Merkel may have her hand on Germany’s tiller for quite a while after the Sept. 26 polls.

Government decisions will be taken “as provided for in the Basic Law,” government spokesman Steffen Seibert said earlier this week.

The comment was prompted by a question from a reporter, who asked — perhaps tongue in cheek — whether Merkel expected to deliver the traditional New Year’s address.

At this point in time, Seibert said, he could “not judge at all” whether there would be extended talks after the Bundestag elections.

He would leave it to journalists to “look into the crystal ball.”

Merkel, who is not running for any political office in the elections, has herself said that her mind will still be on the job until she has to finally leave her post of nearly 16 years.

“There are and will be things asked of me. This will continue until the last day of my term in office,” she told a press conference in July. “And I will continue to do it the way I always have.”

As for what will happen after that, speculation is rife. Merkel herself has kept very quiet on this score.

“The time will come” to consider that question, she said.

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