Veľká Mača house to commemorate Ján Kuciak

The house of the murdered journalist is frequently visited and locals do not oppose to turning it into a museum for freedom of speech.

Ján Kuciak's house in Veľká MačaJán Kuciak's house in Veľká Mača (Source: SME)

Inhabitants of the village of Veľká Mača (in Trnava Region), where journalist Ján Kuciak and his fiancée, Martina Kušnírová, were murdered, do not protest to turning their house into a freedom of speech museum. Many people, from countries like the Czech Repulic, Germany, Austria or as far as Sweden, come here, the Sme daily wrote on April 25.

Read also:UPDATED: Investigative journalist killed in his house Read more 

Trnava Mayor Jozef Viskupič (opposition OĽaNO) plans to build the museum in close cooperation with the survivors and also Kuciak’s colleagues from the journalistic community, artists and personalities of culture, local self-government politicians and civic activists. Viskupič has already met with musician and cultural organiser Michal Kaščák, who represented an informal community around painter Peter Kalmus, the original author of the idea.

How neighbours feel about the murder

Most locals are dissatisfied with how the investigation into the double murder is developing. Mayor of the village, Štefan Lancz, told Sme that he does not understand how the police could have come to the site to examine in detail the surroundings of the house and the municipality one month after the murder.

The mayor also does not like that the village has provided the police recording devices from the camera system with the respective software in order to examine the recording from the time around the murder. Police promised to return the components of the recording system as soon as possible but the village still does not have them back, and thus, the system is dysfunctional.

Read also:Slovakia has lost one of its best investigative journalists, foreign media report Read more 

Locals did not know Kuciak and Kušnírová very well, as they only moved in quite recently but they considered them a nice and smiling young couple who went to church. Their murder shocked the community. “They cannot be forgotten,” Juraj Lancz, who lives close to the house, told Sme. The fact that the engaged couple were ordinary people who were murdered scared locals and made them more attentive towards foreigners or towards suspicious situations.

Future plans with the memorial house

The Freedom of Speech Museum should become not just a memorial site but also a venue for exhibitions, meetings and expert or artistic workshops, the activists opine. The museum would be under the remit of the Trnava Region, according to Sme.

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