Bulgarian Leading Socialist Explains Protests 'Tariff'
The Deputy Speaker of the Parliament from the Bulgarian Socialist Party, BSP, Maya Manolova, stated she was no longer respecting antigovernment protesters as they were currently represented by people affiliated with the opposition.
Speaking in an interview for Nova TV on Friday, she said initially she respected their cause, but the rallies have now turned into "protest tourism" because many people could go to the beach over the summer after being paid to protest.
Manolova went even further from her other similar statements by setting a pay scale for demonstrators: BGN 30 per evening for a retired person, BGN 50 for younger people, and BGN 100 for a family with a small child.
"Are you really harboring any doubt that the majority of protesters have received additional incentives than their noble cause? This is public knowledge and everyone knows it. We are a small country after all and Sofia is not such large of a city. I can give you scores of examples how political parties, particularly the formerly-ruling centrist Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria party, GERB, are organizing rallies," the Socialist MP told the TV hosts.
She was firm her party never organized rallies, but added some structures within it have helped the counter protests in support of the government to provide poor people from the countryside, who could not afford it, opportunity to travel to Sofia to voice their opinion.
"You are not denying people the right to protest, are you? Their right to not like the government? Those who support it, have the same right, but BSP never ever handed someone money to protest," said Manolova.
Regarding the appointment of Delyan Peevski, controversial media mogul and MP from the predominantly ethnic Turkish party Movement for Rights and Freedoms, DPS, as Chief of the State Agency for National Security, DANS, which sparked the rallies 3 months ago, she stated the issue was no longer on the society's agenda and a very small number of people currently cared about it.
"If this will make you happier, I could tell you I made the nomination. No one cares any longer who the person behind it was. Political responsibility for the mistake was assumed. What should we do – have resignations after every mistake?" stressed the Deputy Speaker of the Parliament.
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With these numbers I should have made 3,000 lev per month (100 leva per protest evening for 30 days). I wonder why word didn't spread more rapidly, with the generosity of the organizers i think that instead of 10,000 people protesting per evening you would have had 7 million (all communists included). And with unemployment at 30% in Greece, probably another 3 million Greeks too.