bnn.lv Latviski   bnn-news.com English   bnn-news.ru По-русски
Saturday 29.02.2020 | Name days:
LatviaLatvia

Opinion: oligarchs’ wallet won’t work in Latvia’s first open presidential election

FaceBook
Twitter
Draugiem
print
(No Ratings Yet)

Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUThe President of the Republic of Latvia may be an opportunity for Aivars Lembergs, who is accused of committing serious crimes, to receive a pardon in case the court finds him guilty in the criminal process that has been continuing for years. However, no matter how fat oligarchs’ wallet is, presidential candidate Juris Jansons picked by the Union of Greens and Farmers (UGF) is not likely to become Latvia’s next president – the open vote will make any secret agreements much harder.

Could Lembergs be pardoned?

Several years ago Aivars Lembergs, using his ‘oligarch status’ and support from UGF and Harmony (at the time known as Harmony Centre) put Andris Bērziņš in the seat of Latvia’s president. Something similar happened to Raimonds Vējonis – in both cases it is well-known that certain «nationalists» helped approve the candidate proposed by oligarchs.

It is worth mentioning that in Lembergs’ case fighting for the «right» president is especially important in the context of the decade-long court process that could find him guilty. If this happens there is a way out for Lembergs in the form of the state president’s right

«[…] to grant clemency to criminals against whom judgment of the court has come into legal effect. The Saeima grants amnesty. (Constitution of the Republic of Latvia, Section 45)».

Listening to Jansons most recent interviews, one may get the impression that he is well aware how much he is allowed to say – as long as he doesn’t say too much. When asked by journalists if he would pardon Lembergs if were made president, Jansons did not provide a clear answer. He is aware of the infamous «Ridzene talks» and he has listened to recordings. This is why the «no» did not say implies he might consider pardoning Lembergs should such a need arise.

The desperate phone call

It is possible that Uldis Augulis’ phone call to find a capable presidential candidate was successful. However, things are not exactly going according to plan.

The problem is that Latvia’s parliament has decided to elect the president openly. The political market involving trade of votes is not over, but the open vote will make it harder.

Nevertheless, UGF remains determined. By picking their own presidential candidate – ombudsman Juris Jansons – UGF likely hopes to exact the same scenario as previous years, because even Harmony does not hide the fact that they like Jansons. After all, it is with help from both those parties Jansons has remained Latvia’s ombudsman for a second term.

Both political parties immediately sprung to his defence when the State Audit uncovered violations committed by Jansons in wasting state budget funds and doubted his suitability for the post.

Jansons, meanwhile, claims he is completely apolitical. Perhaps his small experience in politics prevents him from noticing that he is a pawn in a game, in which oligarchs may have ulterior motives?


Leave a reply

Gints Miķelsons put in charge of Latvian Construction Contractors Partnership

From 1 March 2020 onward Gints Miķelsons, who has been the head of Latvian Sustainable Construction Council will be in charge of the Latvian Construction Contractors Partnership, as confirmed by construction contractors.

While Latvia’s GDP grows 2.2%, other Baltic States experience more rapid growth

In 2019, Latvia experienced the slowest GDP growth among Baltic States, according to data from Latvia’s Central Statistical Bureau of Latvia.

Latvia’s GDP growth reportedly 2.2% in 2019

Compared to 2018, the economic growth continued and Gross Domestic Product increased by 2.2 %. In 2019, GDP at current prices amounted to EUR 30.5 billion. Compared to Q3, in Q4 2019 GDP at constant prices grew by 0.1 %, according to seasonally and calendar adjusted data.

Retail trade turnover in Latvia up 2.6% in January

Compared to January 2019, total retail trade turnover rose by 2.6 % in January 2020. Turnover of retail trade in food products grew by 4.4 %.

Vilnis Ķirsis to remain in charge of Unity’s faction in Riga

On Thursday, 27 February, Vilnis Ķirsis was once again picked as the head of Unity party’s faction in Riga, as confirmed by the party.

Latvia and USA sign joint declaration to enhance 5G network security

On Thursday, 27 February, Latvia’s Foreign Affairs Minister Edgars Rinkēvičs and US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo sign a joint US-Latvian declaration on 5G network security, as reported by Foreign Affairs Ministry.

Estonian Tallink Grupp sees profit growth of EUR 9.7 million on year

Estonian provider of ferry transport and related services Tallink Grupp has worked in 2019 with a net profit of 49.7 million euros, according to its unaudited financial results of the year, as reported by Estonian public broadcaster ERR.

Jakrins reportedly a beneficiary in a company that organizes Brasas and Deglava bridge repairs

Long-standing Riga City Council official Emīls Jakrins, who was in charge of the Transport Department not long ago, is beneficiary and factual owner of LLC TecPro Construction, which is a contractor to Lithuanian company Kauno tiltai, which has been hired by the city council to repair Brasas and Deglavas bridges, as reported by Diena newspaper, referencing unofficial information.

UK ready to switch to WTO trade rules if no EU by end of year

The British government has declared that unless concessions are made by Brussels in EU-UK talks on their future cooperation, the former EU member would trade with the bloc on WTO rules from 2021, British news portal The Guardian reports.

Residents able to submit compulsory income declarations by 1 June; VID urges using EDS

March 2020 will mark the beginning of the three-month period within which all residents for whom it is compulsory will be able to submit their income declaration for 2019. This period will last three years for residents for whom this process is voluntary, as reminded by the State Revenue Service.

Lithuanian border guards start informing travellers about the situation with Covid-19

As the new coronavirus Covid-19 continues spreading in Europe, Lithuanian border guards have begun informing travellers from Latvia and Poland about necessary protective measures.

Turkish soldiers killed in Syria, in regime airstrike, Ankara says

In the current epicentre of the Syrian civil war, 33 soldiers of the NATO member state Turkey have been killed as Syrian government military aviation carried out attacks on Turkish military posts set up in its neighbouring country, German broadcaster DW reports citing Ankara.

Weather in Latvia to be winter-like at week’s end

Weather in Latvia is expected to be winter-like at the end of the week – air temperature is expected to drop below 0° C at night in most of the country. In some areas cold snap may be felt during the day, as reported by Latvian Environment, Geology and Meteorology Centre.

First coronavirus infection case found in Lithuania

The first coronavirus infection case is confirmed in Lithuania, as mentioned in Lithuanian government’s statement released on Friday, 28 February, as reported by 15min.lt.

SPKC urges passengers of 26 February Istanbul-Riga flight to respond

Latvia’s Disease Control and Prevention Centre is looking for passengers who flew together with confirmed coronavirus patient from Istanbul to Riga on Wednesday, 26 February.

Regional hospitals in Latvia report high demand for protective clothing

Because of the outbreak of the new coronavirus Covid-19, demand has considerably increased for individual protective clothing, which forces prices to go up, as reported by heads of hospitals.

Rail Baltica not just marvelled, but cussed too in Lithuania

If implemented, the ambitious 5.8-billion euro Rail Baltica project aiming to build a nearly 1000-kilometer rail link from Helsinki to Poland through Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia will be a major infrastructural achievement of the Baltics, but the possibility of dashing at the now surreal speed of 250 kilometres per hour as soon as in 2026, when the project is slated for completion, comes at expense of many land owners in Lithuania’s six municipalities, which will be crossed by the European-gauge tracks.

Construction costs in Latvia up 2.8% in January

Compared to December 2019, the level of construction costs in Latvia fell by 0.2 % in January 2020. Labour remuneration of workers reduced by 0.9 %, prices of building materials – by 0.1 %, but maintenance and operational costs of machinery and equipment – rose by 0.2 %.

In Greece, violent protests against new migrant camps continue for 3rd day

In Greece, continued protests and clashes have resulted in over 60 people suffering injuries as people on the islands of Lesbos and Chios protest against the construction of new migrant centres, British public broadcaster BBC reports.

Minister says Latvia’s initiated territorial reform will create more sustainable municipalities

The report from the European Commission mentions that Latvian government’s initiated administrative territorial reform will create more sustainable municipalities with greater capacity and ability to provide services of comparable quality, as reported by Environment Protection and Regional Development Ministry.

Latvian Saeima changes the prosecutor general’s selection order

On Thursday, 27 February, Latvia’s Saeima approved amendments to the order under which the country’s prosecutor general is selected.

Textile producer in Lithuania complies with Greenpeace standards in industrial textile making

Lithuanian textiles producer Utenos Trikotažas has been deemed by environmental protection organisation Greenpeace as complying with the standards of the later as to not using hazardous chemicals and being fair and transparent in its business, LRT reports.

From March onward prices of alcoholic beverages to increase in Latvia

Through a measured and gradual increase of excise tax rate policy, starting with 1 March 2020 the excise tax rate for alcoholic beverages in Latvia will increase, as confirmed by the State Revenue Service.

435 whistle-blower reports received in eight months in Latvia

In the first year of the Whistleblowing Law, Latvian central state institutions have received 435 reports from whistle-blowers, as reported by the State Chancellery.

Estonia finds first positive coronavirus case

In Estonia, the first case of a person being infected with the novel coronavirus has been found, stated Estonian Social Affairs Minister Tanel Kiik on Thursday, February 27, as cited by Estonian public broadcaster ERR.


Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!