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Saeima member asks anti-corruption office to assess economy minister’s actions

Ivars Zariņš/flickr.com/ Saeima.
Saeima member Ivars Zariņš from Harmony has turned to Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau (CPCB) with a request to assess Economy Minister Arvils Ašeradens’ and the ministry’s officials’ actions in relation to monitoring of subsidized electricity and whether or not their actions contain signs of a conflict of interests and corruption.

The member of the parliament asks authorities to bring responsible people to justice.

«The deputy was motivated to make this step by the fact that he had turned to Economy Ministry with questions on multiple occasions, but no answers were provided in the end. The ministry refrains from providing any information on justifications behind decisions and actions. For example, Saeima members were never told about the ministry’s control group and its actual goals and possible conflicts of interests, which is particularly important for ensuring public interests, getting a clear picture in regards to the function of power stations and their compliance with regulations,» Harmony members explain.

Zariņš notes: «As it turns out, the minister’s promised ‘full’ inspection includes a mere 39 stations, which have been under inspection for more than four months. Only eight stations have been inspected in person. The poor performance of those inspections makes us doubt the true goal of those control measures. Instead of ensuring public trust for its activities, the ministry tries hiding its intentions proposes adapting the unapproved Cabinet of Ministers requirements to legitimize its violations.»

Requests detailing violations have been viewed by Saeima’s Inquiry Committee. All of them were declined in the end because coalition deputies did not permit their progression in the parliament, Harmony says.

«Even today, 14 February, the committee was presented a request in regards to Economy Ministry’s activities. To make sure society never found out about their true intentions, Economy Ministry requested the meeting to be held behind closed doors,» the party adds.

Zariņš notes: «The very first responses from the ministry made it clear that the institution has not only failed to ensure public interests in its decisions and measures undertaken to monitor production of subsidized electricity, but has also been involved in a possible fraudulent scheme and possible commitment of crimes.»


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