Bulgarian PM: Criminal Property Agency Head Pressured Me
Prime Minister, Boyko Borisov, has accepted the resignation of Todor Kolarov, Chairman of Bulgaria's Commission for Establishing of Property Acquired from Criminal Activity.
Borisov made the announcement Saturday, in the country's winter resort of Bansko, where he is attending, along with President, Rosen Plevneliev, the e starts of the World Cup Alpine skiing for women.
Kolarov resigned Friday, pointing out as grounds "a lack of a reform-minded majority in the Commission and a lack of political support on the part of Parliament and the President."
The state Commission for Establishing of Property Acquired from Criminal Activity is devoted to investigating reports of so-called "criminal wealth," as well as wealth from "unexplained sources."
Borisov said he had told the former Chairman that it would be impossible to replace ASAP people he did not want to work with because there are quotas for the said Commission – presidential, parliamentary, etc.
"The Bill is in the Parliament; it will be passed in just a month and we will then elect all, including the Chairman. Nothing made it urgent for Kolarov to pressure me and twist my arms, by depositing this resignation in hopes I will exercise an extreme effort to reshuffle people in the Commission for just a month. So, I immediately signed it – the one who wants to work for his or her dismissal must go," the PM declared.
Plevneliev, on his part, voiced surprise his institution had been tangled, saying he met Kolarov only once to state his full support for him, and the two had agreed on further meetings between the first and the second reading of the Bill.
On the topic of lowering Value Added Tax, VAT, on medications, Borisov commented that he firmly opposed it because this will unleash a series of VAT reductions for other items.
"Now Bulgaria is one of the countries with the lowest taxes in the EU, and we must keep them – anything else would be populism," Borisov concluded.
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