Prague, April 27 (CTK) – Czech Finance Minister Andrej Babis (ANO) owes the public and government coalition partners answers to an awful lot of questions, Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka (Social Democrats, CSSD) told journalists yesterday.
He said the suspicions surrounding Babis’s one-crown bonds and his property threaten the functioning of the government and the trustworthiness of the state.
Sobotka said he will wait until end-April, which is the deadline the Chamber of Deputies gave Babis to explain a suspicion of tax evasion, and then he will make a decision on further steps to be taken within the government and the government coalition, he said.
The government is also comprised of the junior Christian Democrats (KDU-CSL).
“I am worried about the finance minister’s approach he has taken in the past weeks to the case of one-crown bonds and other questions and suspicions which appeared in connection with his business activities,” Sobotka said.
The Government Office distributed to journalists a material of about 40 pages, which sums up various cases connected with Babis.
Sobotka said it is necessary that Babis explain his business transactions to the public as well as deputies who called on him in March to do so.
Babis has time until the end of April to do so.
“After this, I will make a decision on further steps to be taken within the government and coalition,” Sobotka said.
He said he will base his decision on what is beneficial for the state and citizens.
Babis told journalists previously that he will react to the call the Chamber of Deputies’ made on him.
He said, however, that he has already communicated the essential things and that he has nothing more to add.
“It is not possible that a minister be unable to answer serious questions about a suspicion that he played tricks or even resorted to tax evasion in his business activities,” Sobotka said today.
The public started to take interest in Babis’s activities when it surfaced that he bought bonds of his former Agrofert holding for 1.5 billion crowns.
During the clarification of the case, questions of whether he had enough money for this transaction and how he gained it arose.
Babis dismisses all doubts. He has submitted reports on his incomes worked out by two audit firms.
In connection with the case of one-crown bonds, the Chamber of Deputies called on Babis in March to refute the “serious” suspicions of tax evasion by the end of April.
Unless he does so, Sobotka should draw personnel consequences from this.