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Education Ministry calls article on its alleged money squandering biased

The Education Ministry has refuted claims published in the August 6 issue of the Sme daily, contending that the article about alleged non-transparent use of money was meant as a personal attack on the ministry’s senior officials, reads the official statement of the ministry, as reported by the TASR newswire.

The Education Ministry has refuted claims published in the August 6 issue of the Sme daily, contending that the article about alleged non-transparent use of money was meant as a personal attack on the ministry’s senior officials, reads the official statement of the ministry, as reported by the TASR newswire.

The Sme article points to the results of a Finance Ministry audit on the financial records of the Education Ministry, which reportedly detected repeated unethical handling of public funds to procure, for example, flowers, alcohol and other items. It revealed that the ministry either misused financial resources allocated from state coffers or did not provide appropriate evidence for individual transactions in several cases.

The Education Ministry, led by Smer-nominated Dušan Čaplovič, called the article “biased and manipulative interpretation of information”, as reported by TASR. Moreover, the ministry said that it has already taken all due measures vis-à-vis all the shortcomings revealed by the audit, including personnel and structural changes. It stressed that it has also introduced a new system of internal checks aimed at preventing any future mistakes, TASR wrote.

The ministry also noted that the entire audit carried out by the Finance Ministry spanned a period of three years (2010-12) and three ministers – Ján Mikolaj (Slovak National Party [SNS], 2006-10), Eugen Jurzyca (Slovak Democratic and Christian Union [SDKÚ], 2010-12) and Čaplovič. It claimed that the daily in its bias failed to highlight the shortcomings found during the remit of the first two ministers, as reported by TASR.

Source: TASR, Sme

Compiled by Radka Minarechová from press reports

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