Curious Ties Behind Rail Company Appointment
The appointments being made by the current government of Robert Fico are being questioned as state enterprises and organisations start to welcome back some old familiar faces.
An article in Hospodarske Noviny today points to how certain people who held posts in strategic companies also under the previous Fico government are gradually occupying top posts again, even though there could be a conflict of interests as they have ties with influential businesspeople, including Vladimir Poor, who has long been tipped as the secret sponsor of Robert Fico’s Smer-SD party.
One such appointment is that of Vladimir Luptak, who became the general director of railway company ŽS Cargo Slovakia. Luptak previously held a post in the Supervisory Board of ŽOS Trnava. It is maybe a very fortunate coincidence that the company ZOS Trnava, which Poor has a controlling influence over, specialises in repairing and overhauling railway wagons.
Luptak refused to talk to the daily about his relations with Poor, while the Ministry of Transport argues that it is hard to find someone in the field who is free of this kind of conflict of interest. Under the previous government of Robert Fico, Luptak ran another state rail company Železnice Slovenskej republiky (ZSR), so his ‘track’ record obviously suits the current government.
Earlier this week, Transparency International Slovensko pointed to the politicisation of top posts in state enterprises, with new heads almost always being appointed with a change of government and not necessarily based on their suitability for the post.