The Czech branch of the watchdog Transparency International has assessed
the openness of the nine presidential candidates as regards their campaign
financing. It gave the worst marks to current head of state, Miloš Zeman,
saying that he had not revealed details of sponsors or the nature of his
spending so far. Other candidates place high in the polls also had flaws in
their reporting but these were not so great, the report, placed on the
watchdog’s website said.
Candidates face a spending limit of 30 million crowns in the first round with another 10 billion to be spent in the second, if needed.
The police’s anti-corruption squad has recommended 18 people be charged
for large-scale tax evasion connected to diesel and gas transactions
between 2010 and 2011. The fuels were bought in Germany and Austria but the
VAT allegedly went unpaid; damages have been estimated at 1.4 billion
The news was confirmed by the spokesman for the National Centre Against Organised crime Jaroslav Ibehej.
The first stage of the Czech presidential elections is reaching its climax with voting taking place this Friday and Saturday. The nine candidates seeking to become head of state will be trying to get their final messages through in the next days and that’s likely to mean a rush to the campaign coffers where some are, apparently, more equal and open to scrutiny than others.
The General Inspectorate of the Security Services on Tuesday launched a
series of raids in Prague in connection with the alleged influencing of
criminal proceedings. The Czech News Agency said that officers from the
inspectorate, which polices the police, had carried out searches of the
premises of law firms. One was reported to be on Wenceslas Square.
The news site Novinky.cz said that several civilians and members of the security services had been arrested. Another news site, Aktuálně.cz, reported that four of those detained were police officers.
The Group of States against Corruption (GRECO) established in 1999 by the Council of Europe to monitor member states’ compliance with the organization’s anti-corruption standards, is currently holding a two-day conference in Prague. Its aim is to highlight the main trends and the lessons learned from GRECO’s Fourth Evaluation Round of the Czech Republic’s anti-corruption drive.
Lobbyist Marek Dalík has until November 6 to begin serving a five year
prison sentence, the spokeswoman for Prague's Municipal Court has
confirmed. Mr Dalík, she said, was expected at Ruzyně prison at the
latest at four pm on the 6th, a Monday.
Mr Dalík, a former close aid to ex-prime minister Mirek Topolánek, was sentenced to prison in July for soliciting a bribe over a military deal.
Prague’s Municipal Court has sent a summons to lobbyist Marek Dalík, a
former close aid to ex-prime minister Mirek Topolánek – to begin serving
his prison sentence. In July, Mr Dalík was sentenced to five years in
prison for soliciting a bribe over a military deal.
He also has to pay a four million crown fine or he would spend an additional two years behind bars. Mr Dalík could still file a complaint with the Supreme Court but the process would not delay the start of his sentence.
Corruption watchdog and good government promoter, Transparency
International, has released the results of its monitoring of Czech
political parties’ openness about their funding and spending ahead of
upcoming parliamentary elections.
Director David Ondráčka said the results broadly showed parties such as The Greens and Pirates as being the most open.
Traditional parties, such as the Social Democrats and Civic Democrats, occupied a mid-ranking position. The Realist party, the SPO party linked to president Miloš Zeman, and Freedom party scored worst.
Elections to the lower house of parliament take place on October 20 and 21.
The Office for the Protection of Competition has canceled a tender for the modernization of part of railway infrastructure in Prague for 3.5 billion crowns on the grounds that the SŽDC, the body which oversees railway infrastructure, breached the law on public tenders. The decision, which is binding, was published on the antimonopoly office's website.