Bulgarian Socialist: Interior Minister Purposely Framed GERB President BidderDomestic | September 12, 2011, Monday // 11:07| views
The municipal councilman from the opposition Bulgarian Socialist Party, BSP, and Socialist candidate to run for Mayor of Sofia in the upcoming October 23 elections, Georgi Kadiev. Photo by Sofia Photo Agency
The presidential candidate of the ruling Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria, GERB, party has been blackmailed four years ago by three municipal councilmen – one from GERB and two from the right wing.
The information was announced Monday for the Bulgarian National Radio, BNR, by the municipal councilman from the opposition Bulgarian Socialist Party, BSP, and Socialist candidate to run for Mayor of Sofia in the upcoming October 23 elections, Georgi Kadiev.
Kadiev declined disclosing the names of the three individuals, but stressed the Prosecutor's Office must be notified about the case.
"The blackmail is emblematic – it shows that GERB have given up on the 10 Commandments and made up their own – betray your fellowmen, and not be loyal to anyone – Interior Minister, Tsvetan Tsvetanov, in the sneakiest way, framed Plevneliev and now must explain to the Prosecutor while he failed to notify him in the case," Kadiev stated, adding Plevneliev had been exposed as a coward.
On Friday, Deputy Prime Minister and Interior Minister, Tsvetan Tsvetanov, head of the GERB election headquarters, speaking for journalists in the second largest city of Plovdiv during the seminar "Elections 2011 – Mobilizing Institutions and Citizens for Honest and Free Election Process, revealed that Plevneliev had declined reporting the extortion case.
Tsvetanov made the revelation in an attempt to present Plevneliev as an honest businessman, who would never accept a bribe or participate in slander.
The Minister told the media that he first met Plevneliev in 2007 through an acquaintance who introduced the two. At that time, Plevneliev told him that three municipal councilmen from the City Hall, known as the "municipal brokers," asked him for a bribe of EUR 500 000 to secure his ownership of a small land plot in the Sofia Business Park, one of the top projects of the GERB presidential nomination as a businessman, before entering politics.
The plot was property of the City Hall and Plevneliev needed it to finalize the project.
Tsvetanov further informed that after learning about the case he advised the now-presidential hopeful to report it to the police, but the latter declined on the grounds "he did not want to participate in such mechanisms."
When asked by a reporter why, after all, this information had never reached the authorities and the prosecutor's office, the Interior Minister made a U-turn and said that this had not been a case of true corruption, but rather "a proposal."
The Bulgarian law, however, namely the Penal Code, mandates officials and requires from citizens to report any such cases.
Meanwhile, also on Monday, the site for investigative journalism, bivol.bg reported that one of its editors, Atanas Tchobanov, and Petar Penchev, both members of the Association for Free Speech Anna Politkoskaya, have sent a letter to Chief Prosecutor, Boris Velchev, notifying him about the blackmail and Tsvetanov's and Plevneliev's failure to report it, along with the Penal Code texts that are the base of their claim.
Plevneliev has refused to comment on Tsvetanov's revelations.
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