Bulgarian PM Assesses His 3-Year Rule as 'Highly Successful'
Three years after the cabinet of the Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria party, GERB, was sworn in office, Prime Minister and party leader, Boyko Borisov, says that after a while his rule will be assessed as extremely successful.
The GERB cabinet took the oath of office on July 27 2009.
Speaking in an interview for Capital weekly, the PM says that GERB undertook the challenge and the risk to form a minority government; to lead the country in times of crisis without a coalition, and to implement all unpopular reforms.
In the interview, which is to be released in the print edition of Capital on Saturday, Borisov further declares that after three years of "tightening the belts, now the time has come to increase income and demand, with the latter guaranteeing economic growth, which so far has been sustained only by exports"
He grounds his upbeat forecast on improved financing for the business through European programs, advancing regions with more investments thanks to the new highways, clear rules, eliminating corruption and the stability of the banks system, which the PM, cited by Dnevnik daily, ranks first in Europe.
Commenting on the deadly terrorist attack on July 18 in the Black Sea city of Burgas, Borisov states that there is no exodus of tourists and reiterates the high marks given to Bulgaria's special services from the US, Israel, the UK, and other European countries. He vows that the government would not use the terror threat as grounds to expand spying on people and calls speculations reports that the attack is going to delay even further the joining of the free Schengen area.
On the European Commission's monitoring report on the justice system and home affairs under the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism, the PM stresses that he personally took unfair blows over the failures of the judiciary, which is independent of the executive power. He voices the opinion that the right thing to do would be for representatives of the judicial power to appear in the Parliament during no confidence vote debates and assume responsibility for the conclusions of the report.
When asked about the war between the Interior and the judicial system, Borisov replies he attempted to halt the scandal between Interior Minister, Tsvetan Tsvetanov, and judge Miroslava Todorova with Tsvetanov being ready to apologize and the Judge deciding to sue him nevertheless,
The country leader reiterates criticism for the Supreme Judicial Council, VSS, for their decision to dismiss only Todorova for delaying cases, when other magistrates are guilty of the same.
"The double standard is the cause of the problem. Not the removal of a particular judge, but the sanctions not being the same for all, which is the only right way to go. Because then there is no aftertaste of political and other pressure. VSS picked the worst time, the worst hour, and the worst way to do this," he says.
To a question about his relations with the media and his recent statement that journalists serving the Mafia are not real journalists, Borisov replies:
"There is no media in the country that missed to throw mud at me at some time or another. And I just kept my jaws clenched. The attacks started when I was Mayor of Sofia. The Mafia hires journalists as it hires killers. There are journalists, not media, who become Mafia recruits and the consequences of their actions are worse than someone coming to me and shooting me with a machine gun."
In commenting on lobbyist legislation that some GERB Members of the Parliament are passing, the PM replies that he has zero tolerance for such cases and "anyone whom he catches in such act would be dismissed overnight."
When asked to define the word oligarch, Borisov says that "this is an individual who has political power, a media and a business, but can never dine with the PM."
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