While the Minister of Agriculture, Aleksandra Pivec, was attacked for not informing the Commission for the Prevention of Corruption that she was carrying out additional work, Miro Cerar, Andrej Bertoncelj and Dejan Prešiček also did not report their activities, and Jernej Pikalo did not inform the Commission on time.
At the beginning of the month, the media outlet PopTV revealed that the Minister of Agriculture, Aleksandra Pivec, did not report 22 thousand euros of gross income, received due to her additional work at the Bistra Scientific Research Centre in Ptuj, to the Commission for the Prevention of Corruption (Komisija za preprečevanje korupcije – hereinafter referred to as the KPK). She has earned the money with scientific research over the last four years. Before taking up the post of Secretary of State and later the post of Minister of Agriculture, she was employed at the Centre for 17 years and was also its director for six years during that time.
According to the Commission, she did not report her work at the time when she became the Secretary of State, and later the Minister. “We found that she did not notify the commission of this work in writing within the deadline, and did not submit the permission of the employer and the agreed-upon contract – she did not do this neither as a Secretary of State nor later, as the Minister,” the KPK said. The Commission also explained that, as part of the verification of the financial situation of the Ministers who took office when Šarec’s government began its term, they found that she did not submit her report in time, but as Siol reports, she was not the only one.
The Government of Marjan Šarec had a whole bunch of “corruptive” ministers
Other ministers who also worked in the Government of Marjan Šarec were approved for additional work. The approvals are decided on by the competent working body of the government, or the Commission for Administrative Affairs and Appointments. Professional officials must enclose a written notification for the Commission, on their additional work, with the permission of the employer and the signed contract for the performance of the activity or profession. They must do so within eight working days of commencing their activities.
In addition to Pivec, two other ministers obtained the approval for additional work: Jernej Pikalo, former Minister of Education, Science and Sports, as a higher education teacher at the Faculty of Social Sciences, which represents one fifth of his employment, and Miro Cerar, former Minister of Foreign Affairs, who performed additional pedagogical and research work at the Faculty of Law, University of Ljubljana, for a maximum of eight hours per week. In Šarec’s government, the approval for supplementary pedagogical work was also issued to Andrej Bertoncelj, also in the maximum amount of up to eight hours a week. The former Minister of Culture, Dejan Prešiček, who performed educational work at the Academy of Music at the University of Ljubljana, also received the approval for a maximum of eight hours of additional work per week.
None of the aforementioned reported their supplementary work to the Commission for the Prevention of Corruption in a timely manner
The KPK thus checked whether the supplementary work had been reported by all of the ministers who had received the previously mentioned approval from the government, and they found that none of the aforementioned officials had done so. The Commission supposedly received a notification on the performance of research and pedagogical activities of Minister Pikalo at the Faculty of Social Sciences for the years 2018 and 2019, which, according to them, he submitted too late, so a misdemeanour procedure was initiated against him, which has not yet been completed. At the end of 2018, they also received a report against Prešiček. ”In the proceedings, the Commission found that Dejan Prešiček did not inform the KPK about the implementation of additional work, but due to the fact that he no longer held the position of Minister, and the consequent verification of possible incompatibility was no longer relevant, the Commission did not accept the report for consideration,” they wrote.
Even though Cerar and Bertoncelj also received the government’s approval for additional work of no more than eight hours per week during their time in the positions of Ministers, the KPK knows nothing about that. “The Commission was not notified of the additional activities of the two other Minister you mentioned. It was also not informed of the fact that the Ministers were performing additional work,” they replied. Therefore, it is not actually clear whether they performed any additional work according to the permit or not, as there is no publicly available data that would prove the existence of (additional) earnings of the officials.