Party Mouthpiece Was Stopped Because GERB Stole the Money - Bulgarian NationalistsDomestic | January 5, 2012, Thursday // 15:35| views
Ataka leader Volen Siderov has once again referred to GERB and Prime Minister Borisov as "thieves of subsidies". Photo by BGNES
The "Ataka" newspaper stops publication because the subsidy it used to rely on was stolen by center-right ruling party GERB, said Volen Siderov, leader of nationalist party Ataka during a Thursday press conference.
He went on to urge Prime Minister Boyko Borisov to return the money.
Later on Thursday, scores of Ataka supporters staged a protest in front of the Council of Ministers building in downtown Sofia, while Siderov delivered a speech.
"11 MPs from Ataka were lured and bought by GERB on the promise of getting BGN 17 000 per month. As a result, our state subsidy was cut by half, while the party mouthpieces - the "Ataka" newspaper and the Alfa TV station - are only backed by the party and we rely solely on this money," Siderov explained.
In 2011, a total of 11 MPs left the parliamentary group of Ataka, leaving it with the bare minimum of 10 members.
According to news portal dnevnik.bg, six of the renegade MPs pledged allegiance to GERB, four others are expected to follow suit and one sided with the Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP).
Meanwhile, Interior Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Tsvetan Tsvetanov announced that the independent MPs who had diverted their state subsidy to GERB were given the money back to run their parliamentary activities.
"The absurd is made possible by an idiotic provision of the Political Parties Act. When an MP leaves a parliamentary group, they "pledge allegiance" to GERB through a preposterous declaration and the Finance Minister re-allocates the subsidy to the party. This MP has no right to belong to GERB," the nationalist leader insisted.
He further warned that he would refer the matter to the Ombudsman and the Supreme Administrative Court (VAS) because the scheme involved "illegal draining of finances" which the party obtained on the basis of votes received at the parliamentary elections.
Siderov urged other parties in Parliament to sign the petition requesting the cancellation of the provision by the Constitutional Court (KS), adding that it could be used as a tool for buying MPs.
Siderov said that the subsidy cut constituted a penalty operation against Ataka because of its critical stance towards the Cabinet.
The nationalist leader explained that Tsvetanov and his allies at the Interior were investing serious efforts to eliminate the parliamentary group of Ataka and to create a fake group in its place.
He referred to the party as a pseudo-political and pseudo-nationalist formation created for the sole purpose of ousting the current leader.
"There are many who are willing to become leaders, but the entity will be a political Frankenstein, a genetically modified organism in politics, and it will make no difference whoever is placed at the helm," Siderov said.
He announced that Ataka was starting a nationwide protest in front of the Council of Ministers building on Thursday.
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