Government Questioned Over Nominees To Gas Utility
An article in daily Pravda today looks at the backgrounds of the state’s rushed and questionable nominations to the Board of Directors of gas company SPP, while the government and the economy minister have no problem with the reservations.
Economy minister Tomáš Malatinský will appoint the proposed nominees despite questions hanging over their pasts or suitability for the job. Shareholders will decide today at a quickly convened General Meeting on who will fill the posts, and who will gain around EUR 8,000 a month and have a finger on the company’s investment activity.
Prime Minister Robert Fico passed the buck for the nominations to the economy minister, instructing his spokeswoman to announce that “The head of the department is fully responsible for the nomination and also for the work results”.
Questions continue to hang over at least two names from the three state representatives in the SPP Board of Directors. The post of vice-chair, for instance, should go to Alexander Sako, who according to his CV only yesterday went before the examination commission to receive his academic title at the law faculty in Sládkovičovo. This despite the fact that presentation of a copy of the diploma is supposed to be part of the selection proceedings.
Sako is known to have close ties to people from Fico’s Smer party, taking up the position of vice-chair of the Board of Directors in public transport company Dopravne podnik Bratislava shortly after the Smer-backed Milan Ftacnik won the post of Bratislava mayor.
Another suspect nomination, according to Pravda, is 62–year old economist Milan Hargaš, who has a record in the annals of the National Memory Institute under the codename Tomík and Peter as an agent of the secret service ŠtB. He claimed before that this co-operation was “not conscious”. In 2007 he was appointed by President Ivan Gašparovič as a member of the Regulation Board, which oversees and approves prices in the energy sector.
The Supervisory Board members will also be replaced today, before they get a chance at the General Meeting convened for June to contest how the Board of Directors is communicating with it, especially in respect of pending lawsuits.