Most- Híd’s candidate quits race following newspaper article

MOST-Híd party candidate Jozef Bojčík is withdrawing from the party's slate after allegations were published by the Sme daily on January 22.

Marcel Forai, former head of Slovakia's state-owned, and biggest health insurer, Všeobecná Zdravotná Poisťovňa (VšZP) Marcel Forai, former head of Slovakia's state-owned, and biggest health insurer, Všeobecná Zdravotná Poisťovňa (VšZP) (Source: Sme)

The daily wrote that Bojčík’s career in health care could be thriving thanks to what was described as personal links to Marcel Forai, former head of the state-owned (and largest) health insurer in Slovakia, Všeobecná Zdravotná Poisťovňa (VšZP) and Smer-SD party nominee.

Bojčík is a physical education teacher at a Košice city grammar school and at the same time a successful entrepreneur in the health-care sector where his partner is one of the influential health-care tycoons close to Smer, Stefan Cuľba. He is also Forai’s classmate from specialized study at the Slovak Medical University, Sme wrote.

Forai lost his post at the helm of VšZP last year after it transpired that VšZP had signed contracts with companies involving his aunt.

When Forai held the top VšZP job, the annual turnovers of Bojčík’s firm Medi Cool almost tripled, according to Sme.

Bojčík dismissed allegations that his close relationship with Forai lies behind his success. Turnover depends also on the number of patients and their need to acquire a medical aid, he told the Sme daily.

Prečítajte si tiež:Actors in latest health care scandal are connected Read more 

Most- Híd stated in the story that it is not concerned that Bojčík has business ties to a tycoon close to Smer.

After the story was published both Most-Híd and Bojčík, who held the 65th spot on the party’s ticket, labelled the daily’s coverage of the issue tendentious and aimed at harming the party, according to the TASR newswire.

“The article depicted me as a person running a business in the health care sector courtesy of links to former VšZP director Marcel Forai,” said Bojčík, as quoted by TASR. “I reject such accusations and I’m making it known that I’m unaware of any actions which violate not only the law but also good manners.”

He added that the article contained some information which was untrue.

Bojčík, who is a local councillor for Most-Híd in one of Košice’s boroughs, believes that the article was prepared in advance with a view to hurting Most-Híd’s chances in the election.

“This has prompted me to withdraw from the list of candidates in order to make sure that my name cannot become an instrument to damage the reputation of Most-Híd,” said Bojčík, as quoted by TASR. “I also reiterate that I did nothing in contravention of the law or good manners.”

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