RECENTLY dismissed education minister and current MP of the ruling Smer party Dušan Čaplovič admitted on Teraz.sk’s television debate on July 14 that he felt pressure at the ministry from interest groups over the introduction of the Ministry Information System.

“The pressure on me to sign the operational contract was very strong,” he said in the debate, as quoted by the TASR newswire. “Nevertheless, I didn’t sign the contract, and I’m curious how the new minister [Peter Pellegrini] will deal with this [pressure].”

Between 2009 and 2012, when Čaplovič came to the ministry, €13.5 million had been spent, but virtually nothing in the information system was launched, he claimed.

When asked whether it was people from the political environment or the business sphere that attempted to influence him, Čaplovič responded that it was neither.

“It wasn’t promoted via ministers or colleagues in the party, but [by people] within the ministry, frequently by people who are in charge of information technologies,” said Čaplovič, as quoted by TASR.

The Ministry Information System was supposed to collect information on students, teachers and the funding of individual schools. The data was to have been used for producing further analyses and prognoses. Teraz.sk is set to release the full version of the TV debate on Tuesday July 15.

Source: TASR

Compiled by Michaela Terenzani from press reports.
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information
presented in its Flash News postings.