Laššáková talks about "money from overseas" in the third sector

Proposed culture minister first said Fico was right about Soros, then apologised for her statement.

Culture Minister Ľubica Laššáková (Smer). Culture Minister Ľubica Laššáková (Smer). (Source: SITA)

The third sector is much better off than the reported financial circumstances suggest, believes Ľubica Laššáková, who has been listed to take the post of the culture minister in the cabinet proposed by Peter Pellegrini.

“There must be some other source, someone must be financing them, and I think this money is coming from overseas,” Laššáková said in an interview with the Denník N daily when asked to comment on the conspiracy theories of outgoing PM Robert Fico about US financier and philanthropist George Soros. “In this way someone is trying to interfere with the politics of post-communist countries.”

Following her meeting with President Andrej Kiska on March 21 Laššáková apologised for the statements and said she also explained them to the president.

"It was an unfortunate formulation, perhaps under the pressure of events," Laššáková said. "I apologise for my statement."

Read also:Who is George Soros and why is Fico’s mention of him a problem? Read more 

Asked by Denník N how she, as a former journalist, perceived the approach of her party boss Fico towards the media and journalists, Laššáková answered that since her times, the approach of journalists towards information has changed and currently many journalists lack the “elementary fundamentals of journalistic ethics”, and that “a prime minister, or anyone else, being under the constant pressure of journalistic criticism, may get upset”.

Laššáková, a journalist by education and original profession, became a member of Smer in 2012, and then became the regional head of Smer in Banská Bystrica from June 2012 to June 2016, known for fighting against extremist regional governor Marian Kotleba (ĽSNS). Before accepting the ministerial position, she was addressed by Pellegrini and Fico last week, and then took two days to consider the offer.

Read also:Tomáš Drucker may become new interior minister Read more 

As for her predecessor, Marek Maďarič, she said that he maintained the ministry in a good, consolidated shape, but she could not understand why he resigned in the wake of the murder of journalist Ján Kuciak and his fiancée, Martina Kušnírová.

Laššáková stressed that regional culture, especially small theatres, galleries and museums, should be the center of attention more as well as financed better, rather than dismissed and forgotten now.

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