Latvian Healthcare Minister Guntis Belevics may have «accidentally» committed his fourth breach of anti-corruption regulations. It turns out at least two levels of authority are still in force since 2013 and 2014 when his son, Arturs Belevics, submitted them on behalf of the minister to Baltacon and ABC Pharma.
According to Pietiek, on 20 November, 2013, Belevics’ son provided his father with universal authority, giving the minister rights among other things to represent interests of ABC Pharma in the State Agency of Medicines, Healthcare Ministry, Health Inspection and other state and municipal institutions, as well as represent ABS Pharma in all actions related to allocation of special permits to this company.
On 31 March, 2014, Arturs Belevics provided Guntis Belevics another level of authority – on behalf of Baltacon this time, giving the minister rights to represent Baltacon’s interests in Healthcare Ministry’s Health Inspection, Healthcare Ministry, State Agency of Medicines and other state and municipal institutions in which Baltacon is present.
As confirmed by Pietiek’s sources in Healthcare Ministry, prior to his appointment as minister, Guntis Belevics actively used those rights – writing applications and complaints to the ministry and its institutions, State Chancellery and others.
However, Arturs Belevics has provided his father with aforementioned authority indefinitely. As it turns out, these documents have not been recalled. With that, Guntis Belevics, as Healthcare Minister, remains officially authorized to represent his family business and its interests in Healthcare Ministry and its institutions while in the post of Healthcare Minister.
There is a strict rule in regulations for withdrawing issued authority – one needs to go to a sworn notary and submit an applications for withdrawal of authority. It is necessary to bring the official document detailing official authority or its copy, so that it is possible to look up when and who was provided with official authority. Then the sworn notary will publish a statement in the Latvian Herald and inform the person in question about the withdrawal of those special rights.
Latvian Herald’s database shows that the two aforementioned authorities have not been withdrawn – neither the minister nor his son has bothered to do anything about that.
Guntis Belevics and Healthcare Ministry have been actively avoiding answering questions asked by Pietiek. Belevics’ son also avoids answering questions. Unofficial sources, on the other hand, have informed the portal that Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau has taken notice of this situation. The bureau has begun looking into two other possible conflicts of interest involving Belevics. KNAB has already spotted a breach in the third case. However, Belevics has yet to come to the bureau to read the report.