President Andrej Kiska has recently been accused of speculations concerning potential tax fraud that dates back to 2013, the Pravda daily wrote. Kiska’s company KTAG started correcting its book-keeping last autumn, after suspicions concerning the dubious financing of his presidential campaign emerged. This happened shortly before the arrival of tax officers, according to Pravda.
Kiska, the co-owner of KTAG, could have benefited from the tax dodging. Without the wide publicity, it is possible that the books would have contained unauthorised tax expenses amounting to nearly €476,000, which are actually the expenses on the presidential campaign in the years 2013 and 2014. The company removed them from the records only after four years. To avoid criminal responsibility, KTAG voluntarily paid nearly €145,000 on corporate taxes and VAT last year. The company also corrected a total of 17 tax returns, Pravda wrote on May 30.
Question of timing
The question is why the company had not made these steps earlier, as tax officials had found some discrepancies already by the end of 2014.
The president’s spokesman Roman Krpelan said on May 29, as quoted by Pravda, that KTAG acted immediately after the tax audit found the discrepancy. Based on internal checks, the firm corrected its tax returns retroactively. However, KTAG received the tax audit results in October 2014 and it only corrected its tax returns by the end of 2017, according to Pravda.
These steps only surfaced after the police and a parliamentary committee for incompatibility of functions started scrutinising the issue.
A smear campaign?
The opposition party Freedom and Solidarity (SaS) points out to police and Financial Administration that Andrej Kiska has been the target of smear campaign initiated “by the compromised politicians under Robert Fico“. Its members are also calling on the president to publish the documents from the presidential campaign.
“We think that the police and the prosecutor’s office are not protecting president and are inactive since they should have long opened a criminal prosecution in this matter,” SaS chairman Richard Sulík, and party vice-chairs Ľubomír Galko and Jana Kiššová wrote in joint statement, quoted by the Denník N daily.
SaS wrote that the public now does not know whether the documents from his presidential campaign reaching the media now are fake or copies of the original ones.
“We do mind that the institute of the president of the Slovak Republic is losing its importance and dignity,” they further wrote as cited by Denník N, adding that in this situation, Andrej Kiska should publish all orders for the work he asked KTAG to carry out within his unofficial and official campaign, as well as all invoices KTAG sent to Andrej Kiska afterwards, and all documents proving the payment of these invoices from Kiska’s private resources.
This is the right way, according to SaS, to end the reckless denigration of the head of state by the “absolutely compromised politicians led by (ex-PM and chairman of the ruling Smer party, ed. note) Robert Fico.
30. May 2018 at 14:00 | Compiled by Spectator staff