Run, Rosen, Run!Editorial |Author: Milena Hristova | September 5, 2011, Monday // 21:14| views
Intelligent and soft-spoken, a respected name in the construction business.
This is how US diplomats in Sofia described (former) Regional Development Minister, candidate for and most probably the country's next President Rosen Plevneliev, according to Wikileaks. This is, in fact, what every ordinary Bulgarian you happen to bump into the street will tell you about him too.
One of the most successful entrepreneurs and ministers in Bulgaria, who knows how to turn stress into success, Plevneliev has the right to at least the benefit of the doubt when it comes to construction business and highways. But is he the best choice for president?
Prime Minister Boyko Borisov knows he should be more than careful in his staff policy, which has often been a washout with dire consequences. Unfortunately he just can't help being a populist and apparently pressed Plevneliev into accepting his invitation to run for president. Which the minister apparently did reluctantly.
Soft-spoken as he is, Plevneliev gives you first the impression of a man who is more likely to muse, meditate or navel-gaze rather than gets his hands dirty with a project. Logic, strategy and nice manners, obviously his usual weapons, were useful in the ministerial office of the poorest and most corrupt country of the European Union.
But isn't he holding on to impossibly high standards of modesty, transparency and rightfulness, so typical of the Western European culture that has shaped him? Should he remind us of prominent Bulgarian politician and banker Atanas Burov, a man of vision and a minister in four governments in the first half of the nineteenth century, who turned his back on the bank to enter the country's turbulent political life? Isn't Plevneliev just a na?ve middle-aged man? Or may be he just couldn't resist the temptation of the presidential office, a largely ceremonial, but no doubt prestigious post?
True, we, Bulgarians, do not usually believe in impressive biographies. Still it won't do any harm to say once again that Plevneliev founded the first Bulgarian construction firm to get an ISO 9001 certificate, worked in Germany as the co-owner of a construction firm that worked as a subcontractor for Lindner, became the CEO of Lindner Immobilien Management Bulgaria Jsc and was also the manager of Business Park Sofia, which was constructed under his supervision in Sofia's Mladost district.
True, we, Bulgarians prefer to be cynical. To believe something good about someone, rather than something bad, when you have the possibility of doing either, is not our cup of tea.
But this time it is more than clear that Borisov decided to unburden his woes to some one else, awakening his do-gooder needs and making him ready and willing to shepherd a whole country.
Rosen Plevneliev has been called forth into the most public position in his life so far, but it is still unclear whether he will be touting his own talents or become a spokesperson for someone else's venture.
He claims to have the ability to speak up-even if the truth may hurt those who are counting on reaping the benefits. This seems to be the only thing he has in common with the man, who picked him, the masculine, tough-talking ex-mayor of Sofia, former bodyguard and current Prime Minister Boyko Borisov. Isn't Plevneleiv too much "yin" for him? Well, that may be exactly why they say together they are capable of jaw-dropping progress.
Last, but not least Plevneliev is also the first candidate for president in Bulgaria able to prove how he piled up his wealth and the first to enjoy enviable approval rates in opinion polls.
How could Borisov resist the temptation?
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