Spectator on facebook

Spectator on facebook

NEWS IN SHORT

Smer nominee is alleged Scientologist

WHEN Prime Minister Robert Fico spoke about Scientologists before the run-off of the presidential elections as a sect that represents an extraordinary security risk for Slovakia, he allegedly forgot about nominees of his own party, the Sme daily wrote in its April 12 issue, referring to Martin Wiedermann, general director of the Central Securities Depository (CDCP) and chair of its board of directors. Wiedermann also owns the company Shift, which owns several internet domains connected to Scientology, Sme wrote. Scientology became a buzzword in the presidential election campaign.Smer has refused to comment on the issue. The National Property Fund (FNM), which owns the majority share of the CDCP, said it knew about the connection.

WHEN Prime Minister Robert Fico spoke about Scientologists before the run-off of the presidential elections as a sect that represents an extraordinary security risk for Slovakia, he allegedly forgot about nominees of his own party, the Sme daily wrote in its April 12 issue, referring to Martin Wiedermann, general director of the Central Securities Depository (CDCP) and chair of its board of directors. Wiedermann also owns the company Shift, which owns several internet domains connected to Scientology, Sme wrote. Scientology became a buzzword in the presidential election campaign.
Smer has refused to comment on the issue. The National Property Fund (FNM), which owns the majority share of the CDCP, said it knew about the connection.

“The management of the FNM was informed recently that Mr Wiedermann is a sympathiser of Scientology,” the FNM wrote in a statement, as quoted by Sme. The daily reported that he revealed his sympathies between the first and second round of the presidential elections.
The CDCP gathers information about Slovak companies and manages the database of their shareholders, which contains private and personal data, Sme wrote.

The fund will not ask Wiedermann to resign from the function. The Church of Scientology is not prohibited in Slovakia, nor is it listed as a sect, the FNM wrote in a statement, adding that the constitution guarantees the freedom of religion to all citizens, as reported by Sme.

Wiedermann himself does not want to discuss Scientology, telling Sme that these questions have nothing to do with his profession and as such are a private matter. When asked how he can ensure that confidential information from the CDCP will not be leaked to Scientologists, he said he does not work with such data. The FNM confirmed this claim and stressed that he does not need security clearance, Sme wrote on April 15.

During the presidential election campaign, Fico pointed several times to an alleged connection between his main rival, philanthropist Andrej Kiska, and the Church of Scientology. He referred to Kiska’s book, which was published by Ladislav Pavlík, the president of a school named after L. Ron Hubbard, the founder of the Church of Scientology in the US. Pavlík also wrote a foreword for the book.

It later emerged that Fico’s own government approved state funding for a firm led by a man who openly declared links with Scientology.

The processing of personal data is subject to our Privacy Policy and the Cookie Policy. Before submitting your e-mail address, please make sure to acquaint yourself with these documents.

Top stories

Slovaks speak the worst English in central Europe

Seven out of ten job applicants in Slovakia claim to speak English.

Illustrative Stock Photo

Journalists should resist the temptation to tweet

There is still a need for old-fashioned news reporters who just get the facts out there, says Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Ian Johnson.

Ian Johnson

We refuse Fico's attacks against journalists

More than 480 journalists have signed a statement condemning the most recent verbal attacks of the former prime minister against journalists.

Slovak journalists at one of protest rallies organised in response to the murder of journalist Ján Kuciak and his fiancée.

UPDATED: Police investigate protest organisers over Soros allegations

The National Criminal Agency wants to see the accounts of the protest organisers due to a criminal complaint alleging they are paid by George Soros.