Interior Minister Denisa Saková (Smer) allegedly bought a lucrative space in Panorama City in downtown Bratislava, close to the Danube embankment, for a significantly lower price than she is asking for it now.
She bought the space from a company belonging to the J&T financial group, as chair of the Ordinary People and Independent Personalities (OĽaNO) Igor Matovič told the press on May 2.
The Interior Ministry responded that Matovič himself is being investigated for his business activities, the SITA newswire reported.
Purchase from a J&T-related company
Back in 2015, Saková and her now ex-husband founded the Komec company, which reported a loss both in the years 2015 and 2016, as financial statements show. However, in 2016 the company reported a property worth €466,000 and a bank loan at €90,000.
Apart from a two-floor non-residential space in Panorama City with a total size of 289 square metres, Saková owns three parking spaces. She and her ex-husband bought the space after the 2016 parliamentary elections, according to Matovič.
“They bought a commercial space at the best location in the city for €1,350 per square metre,” Matovič said, as quoted by SITA, adding that the real price for such a space is €2,580 per square metre. Saková is currently selling the space for this price.
Back in 2013 Alexander Sako was trying to defend an overpriced procurement and three years later he and his ex-wife bought a commercial space from the same company for an extremely low price, Matovič continued.
He recalled the fact that Sako had served as deputy chair of the board of directors and then as a member of the board of directors in Bratislava’s public transport company Dopravný Podnik Bratislava (DPB) between 2011 and 2017. In 2012 and 2013, DPB organised a purchase of 70 buses. Even though it was clear that the procurement was tailor-made for the SOR company, belonging to J&T, Sako defended it.
The whole procurement was scrapped only by the Public Procurement Office, and DPB had to announce a new tender, Matovič said, as reported by SITA.
Ministry rejects the claims
Matovič continues with his attacks on the Interior Ministry because he himself is being investigated by the law enforcement bodies for his business activities, the ministry responded in a statement.
“As the minister has explained to several media in the past days, she bought the space in Panorama City from the company Panorama Byty at the turn of the years 2015 and 2016,” the ministry wrote, as quoted by SITA.
The deal on the future agreement, which clearly set the conditions, was signed in 2015. It combined several sources for financing: a loan taken by the company’s authorised representative and a bank loan. The company paid altogether €558,000 for the space.
The ministry stressed that it was the activity of her ex-husband. When they divorced, they divided the property and the company’s owner changed. The space is currently being sold, but not for the price mentioned by Matovič, the ministry added.
“The reason is that the minister has no time to take care of it and wants to focus on her function,” the ministry continued, as quoted by SITA.
3. May 2018 at 13:58 | Compiled by Spectator staff