bnn.lv Latviski   bnn-news.com English   bnn-news.ru По-русски
Tuesday 17.10.2017 | Name days: Karīna, Gaits
LatviaLatvia

Lembergs & Co. gathered to discuss «problems» of the high and mighty

FaceBook
Twitter
Draugiem
print
(No Ratings Yet)

Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUPolitical businessman Ainars Slesers held a friendly discussion with his associates – Aivars Lembergs, Andris Ameriks, Janis Urbanovics, Janis Duklavs and Valerijs Kargins – at Ridzene Hotel. The group discussed toppling Valdis Dombrovskis’ government, replacement of multiple high-ranking officials and the possible sale of pieces of land within Riga Freeport’s territory, according to transcripts from the conversation published by Ir magazine and provided by anonymous sources.

According to this information, Slesers met with Kargin in 2010. The latter came to see Slesers to ask for help to make sure the Saeima would not vote for the law amendments and not take away generous interest payments from the former owner of Parex Bank. Kargins told Slesers that he has business in Belarus, interesting offers in Russia and nothing in Latvia. Although the former Parex clientele remained with him, Kargins said it is important to keep in mind «which direction to move», because the banking sector is under «serious monitoring».

Slesers said that if he succeeds in elections, there would be «many changes» and more business opportunities for everyone. He said he would develop not only residence permit issue in exchange for investments in real estate, but would also support amending the Citizenship Law. «Here’s the idea – we should sell passports,» said Slesers, adding that giving citizenship to 10,000 very rich investors would help Latvia resolve all of its problems in one fell swoop. He added, however, that this cannot be accomplished with «the current government and all those parasites that sit there». «It can only be done if we have HC [Harmony Centre] and 51 votes, or with Andris [Ameriks] or Aivars [Lembergs], but not with others. Others won’t go for it,» said Slesers.

Kargins agreed that the financial management in the country should be changed. «I don’t hide my opinion in a small company of people. I say the entire financial top should be removed [Bank of Latvia Governor Ilmars] Rinkevics, [Finance and Capital Market Commission chairperson Irena] Krumane – they are the enemies,» said Kargins.

The ex-banker asked for help from Slesers’ party in the parliament. «All this time they’ve been trying to accomplish in the Saeima to have us [and the other ex-Parex owner Viktors Krasovicskis] screwed. The memorandum that was signed with IMF has a point in accordance with which the government should turn to the parliament to take away income from subordinated capital from former shareholders. To take away our income!»

Slesers promised help because he is no communist or socialist.

Another conversation was tapped in April 2010. This one was between Slesers and Duklavs. The two discussed the failure of Janis Maizitis in the Saeima, when the coalition decided against its previous promise and did not support his re-election as Prosecutor General. «Aivars demonstrated his power then and smacked the prosecutor across the face. What a display it was!» Slesers said. Duklavs agreed. «It will serve as a signal to other prosecutors and many others in the law enforcement that power is about the change,» Slesers concluded.

For power to truly change, they needed victory in the 2010 autumn election. «The gathering I had participated in made it clear that UGF [Union of Greens and Farmers] candidates would have to be picked from people ready to work with PLL [Par labu Latviju!] and Harmony Centre,» Duklavs said. But Slesers voiced concerns that UGF would pick too many «uncontrollable lumps». He said they would have to work hard before elections to form a government with HC. «Here’s what I think – if UGF provides the right people, we won’t have any problems creating absolute majority,» said Slesers. «That’s what Aivars hopes for,» Duklavs replied.

Ir reports that Slesers and Duklavs also discussed the government’s permission for the construction of Slesers’ home in Pumpuri. Duklavs said [then the Prime Minister Valdis] Dombrovskis refused to push this matter personally, but nonetheless agreed to let Duklavs do it while the prime minister was away on a visit to a foreign country.

At the end of their conversation, Duklavs asked Slesers as the chairman of Riga Freeport management board «one practical question». «I happen to own a piece of land at the port,» said the minister. The property, which is several hectares large, is located on the left bank of Daugava River. «It’s registered under a couple of firms.» It has multiple owners – all of them registered under fake names. Duklavs personally owns 10% of the land. His associates wished to sell their property at the port and receive a modest 15 «lemons» [millions] in exchange. Slesers explained there is no way to get that much – no one buys land from under the port. He did say it can be leased cheaply. Politician Vents Armands Krauklis had a similar problem – he bought land under the airport and later tried selling it, said Slesers.

A day after the People’s Party decided to leave Dombrovskis’ government in March 2010, Slesers Lembergs and then the leader of Harmony Centre’s Saeima faction Urbanovics convened together to discuss the tactic they would employ for the October’s Saeima elections, Ir reports. According to the tapped conversation, Slesers was worried about UGF wanting to form a government with SC, not Unity. «We need to know because otherwise it would be unfair. It cannot be that today[UGF Saeima faction leader Augusts] Brigmanis sleeps under, but tomorrow – alongside Slesers and Urbanovics! I just can’t believe it,» he said. Urbanovics agreed. Then both politicians turned to television news, showing People’s Party deputy Aija Barca expressing support for minority government. «This c**t screwed us over too,» Urbanovics commented.

The two were then joined by Lembergs in the hotel room. He said staying in minority government with Dombrovskis pushes UGF in a corner, because this meant cutting budget costs by half and having [then the Welfare Minister Uldis] Augulis open to the public with bad news right before elections. «Coming out with his own proposals, none of which will be good – not ever one. And he’ll direct all hate towards green farmers,» Lembergs said. He also offered a solution – coming up with a much more positive economic growth outlook for the next year. «And no deficit for me. That’s all!»

Another solution, according to Lembergs, would be refinancing social budget deficit from the base budget: «And that’s the whole reform!»

Lembergs also gave Slesers a piece of advice – to use the fact that Dombrovskis now had to look for support with the same person he was fighting the whole time. «Humiliate them some more. Make them crawl to you – the oligarch they’ve been demonizing this whole time,» said Lembergs.

As reported by Ir magazine, a meeting was held in the hotel after Saeima elections in October 2010. This meeting was attended by Lembergs, Slesers and Ameriks. Lembergs was angry at Leonids Loginovs and announced his intention to discuss his replacement with Dombrovskis. The core of the conflict surrounded LSF, which Lembergs’ children were apparently interested in. Lembergs told Slesers and Ameriks that there had been an agreement about lease of tug boats and their operation at the port. «Even a bribe was accepted – some USD 300,000. But what we agreed upon was never realized. On top of that, the company now owes the port USD 500,000. We paid Loginov & Co. They took the money by never did what they promised!» Lembergs expressed his shock and demanded the port management to find a way out from this situation.

Ameriks promised: «I think we can find a way. […] We just need a legally clean variant.» He also corrected Lembergs, saying that no bribes were taken: «No one paid anything there. In the end it was all about promises…»

Slesers tried calming Lembergs by saying that Loginovs «is not a bad man, but every now and then he does things like that…» Ameriks also said the government would fall after presidential elections, and that the management board of the freeport is nothing to fuss about: «Look, here’s what I have to say – do you even remember your role in this? […] The board is a buffer. You wouldn’t get by even a week without that buffer. A new minister will come and screw you over before you even wake up.» Lembergs then promised UGF would get the Transport Minister’s post.

Talks about the big politics continued between Lembergs and Slesers. Ir magazine writes that Lembergs started the talks with a lesson, saying that by joining up Slesers and ex-prime minister Andris Skele ata away each other’s voters. «You see? Had you listened to me, you would have stayed in Riga.» Slesers admitted his mistake, but also said he hopes taking over after presidential elections in 2011. «You have to mark a president,» Slesers said, adding that Valdis Zatlers should be «taken the f**k down».

Ref: 224.109.109.6292


Leave a reply

Latvia invites Iran to act constructively to ensure security

Latvian Foreign Affairs Minister Edgars Rinkēvičs participated in a meeting of the EU Foreign Affairs Council in Luxembourg, where he discussed about the role of Iran in the region and the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action in light of the upcoming report from US President Donald Trump to the Congress on Iran’s progress realizing the plan.

Vigil held in Malta over killing of investigative journalist

Several thousand people in Malta have taken part in a vigil held after news broke of the killing of an investigative journalist, who blamed Maltese government for corruption.

American exchange indexes reach record-high values; oil prices on the rise

In response to price rise of bank stocks, three leading indexes of US exchanges reached new record heights on Monday, 16 October. In addition, US Federal Reserve System manager Janet Yellen’s prediction regarding a soon inflation rise has increased confidence that base interest rate will increase in December.

54.14% more alcohol exported from Latvia; most of it to Russia

In the first eight months of 2017, a total of 102.259 million litres of alcoholic drinks was exported from Latvia, which is 54.14% more when compared with the same period of last year.

In pictures: Ireland hit by worst storm in 50 years

Three people have been killed in Ireland in the storm Ophelia, which cut off electricity networks to 120 000 homes and businesses in the country. Gusts of wind in Ireland on Monday, October 16, had reached the speed of 44 metres per second.

Tragic wildfires in Portugal and Spain

No less than 30 people have died in wildfires in Portugal and Spain.

Ašeradens to leave Latvian government at the end of November

Latvian Economy Minister Arvils Ašeradens intends to leave the government after approval of the 2018 budget in the Saeima, which is scheduled for the end of November, as confirmed by Prime Minister Māris Kučinskis.

Islamic extremists blamed for tragic terrorist attack in Somalia

The death-toll in a tragic terror attack in the eastern African state of Somalia has reached 320 people and local authorities have stated that a key member of the cell that allegedly launched the attack on Mogadishu has told them that al-Shabaab was responsible for the crime.

Rīgas namu pārvaldnieks gets new management

From now on Rīgas namu pārvaldnieks will have a new chairman: once the head of Latio Namsaimnieks has been appointed as the new head of the company. The other vacant post has been given to Ardis Pāvilsons.

Catalonia misses ultimatum deadline, Spanish government vows to act after Thursday

The separatist Spainish region of Catalonia has missed the deadline to clarify, if it has declared independence and Madrid has received a letter from the President of the autonomous region, which still needs analysis.

What will be the consequences for companies that cheated with electricity production permits

Businesses that were caught using fake permits for electricity production in mandatory procurements will not have their permits extended, says Latvian Economy Minister Arvils Ašeradens.

Latvian tourist accommodation facilities experience increase of overnight guests

The number of nights tourists and other guests spent in Latvian hotels and other tourist accommodation facilities in the first eight months of 2018 has grown 12.2% in comparison with the same period of last year, reaching 3.524 million.

Antāne: transit industry has been on thin ice lately

«The transit industry has been on thin ice lately. Russia’s decision to divert all cargoes to its ports will only smash the ice. The government and state policy-makers have two choices – wait for the ice to break completely and watch the industry drown until finally stepping in, or act now to at least reduce the crisis for the country’s national economy, workers and their families,» says President of Baltic Association – Transit and Logistics Inga Antāne.

Kučinskis evasive in evaluation of Unity’s Economy Minister candidates

Latvian Prime Minister Māris Kučinskis remains evasive when it comes to assessing Unity’s Economy Minister candidates.

Amid alleged harassment scandal, Rõivas leaves post in Riigikogu

The former head of Estonian government Taavi Rõivas, who has been pointed to as allegedly having groped a woman during a visit to Singapore, has denied the claims, but has nevertheless decided to leave the of the second deputy speaker of the Estonian parliament.

De Facto: only one person was convicted of corruption in politics by KNAB in 15 years

In the past fifteen years, Corruption Prevention and Combating Bureau completed only one political corruption case, as concluded by De Facto programme of LTV.

Centre party victorious in Estonian local government elections

In the Estonian municipal election, held on October 15, the largest overall support has been won by Centre Party that is also the ruling party in Estonian central government.

Week to kick off warm in Latvia; weather to become colder down the line

At the beginning of the week, several cyclones will pass over Scandinavia. Cyclones will also dictate weather in Latvia. Atmospheric fronts will pass over the country multiple times throughout the week. Nevertheless, the sun will appear every now and then, as reported by State Environment, Geology and Meteorology Centre.

CEO of Samsung Electronics resigns, citing unprecedented difficulties

At the world's second largest electronics firm Samsung Electronics, its co-chief executive officer Kwon Oh-hyun has stepped down, pointing to management problems in the massive South Korean company.

Accreditation fees for sign language interpreter programmes may be reduced in Latvia

Latvian Welfare Ministry intends to work with Education and Science Ministry to find a solution for the situation with accreditation fees in the existing sign language interpreter programme, as reported by Welfare Ministry’s representative Aiga Ozoliņa.

Austrian government expected to be headed by 31-year old Kurz

In the Austrian parliamentary election, held on Sunday, October 15, victory is projected to the right-wing Austrian People's Party and its leader Sebastian Kurz could be become Europe's youngest head of government.

Week in Lithuania. Lithuania buying Norwegian air defence systems

Lithuanian defence officials have announced intention to buy Norwegian medium-range air-defence systems NASAMS in hopes of patching one of the biggest defence gaps.

Dryer and warmer weather expected

This weekend and next week, dryer and warmer weather is expected in Latvia, according to forecasts by the Latvian Environment, Geology and Meteorology Centre.

Orkla Foods Latvija invests 122 000 euros in new production line and design

Juice and sauce producer Orkla Foods Latvija owned by the Norwegian conglomerate Orkla Group is investing 122 000 euros in a new production line and in the development of new product packaging design.

Return to military conscription discussed in Latvia

The restoration of mandatory military service would need three preconditions – the need expressed by the military, political will and public support, evaluated Latvian Defence Ministry State Secretary Jānis Garisons at an academic discussion on the necessity to restore conscription.

Newest comments