The Supreme Audit Office has accused the Office of the Government of using money from the state budget as if it were its own in the period 2000 and 2001. The Office of the Government ignored rules for state bodies, Jana Krejcova of the Supreme Audit Office said on Wednesday. She said, for instance, that cigarettes and alcohol for meetings had been bought out of state funds, something which she had never come across before. During the period in question, the Office of the Government was run by Karel Brezina, who was minister without portfolio in the government of Milos Zeman.
The Supreme Audit Office also gave more details on Wednesday about the misuse of almost 900 million crowns in the government's Internet for Schools project. While 90 percent of schools should have received internet access by 2002, in reality only 55 percent had, even though 85 percent of the budget had been used. On Tuesday the office said it would file a lawsuit in connection with the missing millions.
Temperature records fell across the Czech Republic on Wednesday, with the highest temperature ever recorded in Moravia - 38.2 Celsius - being reached in Breclav. The west Bohemian town of Plzen saw a new record temperature of 38.3 degrees. Prague saw an August 13 record set in 1861 broken, with a temperature of 36.8 degrees. The Czech Republic has been hit by tropical weather in recent weeks; rivers have been running very low in some parts of the country and some forest paths closed due to the danger of fires.
The largest Czech insurance company, Ceska pojistovna, said on Wednesday that it had settled 94% of claims filed in connection with the floods which hit the Czech Republic exactly a year ago. A spokesman said the company had handled over 50,000 claims amounting to some 9.1 billion crowns.
The oldest Czech to have served as a soldier in World War I, Alois Vocasek, died on Saturday at the age of 107, the website euro.cz reported on Wednesday. At the time of his death Mr Vocasek was attempting to take a case to the European Court of Human Rights, saying he was wrongfully imprisoned after World War II for collaborating with the Nazis. Alois Vocasek, who was born in 1896 near Kolin, married for the fourth time at the age of 97.
The Scottish film star Sean Connery has donated the proceedings of Tuesday's European premiere of his film the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, which was held in Prague's Slovansky Dum, towards repairing the damage caused by the floods which hit the Czech Republic last August. Mr Connery, who was in Prague during the floods making part of the film, gave one cheque for 850 thousand crowns to Dagmar Havlova's Vize 97 foundation and another for the same amount to the mayor of Prague, Pavel Bem.
Thursday should be quite clear, though rain and storms are expected in some parts of the country. Temperatures should range from 26 to 30 degrees Celsius.
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