Trade unionist Branimir Štrukelj, one of the highest-paid officials and a real estate mogul, is trying to settle the score with the Government in a malicious way

Branimir Štrukelj. (Foto: STA)

Trade unionist Branimir Štrukelj is inciting the employees of the education sector once again, saying that the pressures will intensify if the Ministry of Education does not agree to a written agreement with SVIZ (Sindikat vzgoje, izobraževanja, znanosti in culture Slovenije – Trade Union of Education, Science and Culture of Slovenia) on the payment for additional work under special circumstances due to the restrictions caused by the epidemic. Štrukelj wants to achieve his goal by all possible means, which is supposedly also the goal of the members of his Trade Union. Kučan’s former son-in-law’s style of fighting is similar to that of the leftists; he is fighting for a few extra euros per month for the SVIZ members, and on the other hand, thousands of euros are flowing into his bank account every month.
We could say that Štrukelj is really fighting for the rights – especially his own.

We have previously already written about how Kučan’s former son-in-law, a prominent representative of the Levica party and trade unionist Branimir Štrukelj had begun his ideological fight against the current Government of the Republic of Slovenia. He started his fight in the first half of April and is continuing it even now, as he recently sent the members of SVIZ a special notice, informing them that the Minister of Education had refused to sign an agreement with SVIZ on a proper evaluation of the increased workload and entitlement to benefits due to the increased risk of exposure because of the reopening of schools and kindergartens.

The General Secretary of SVIZ is clearly dissatisfied with everything that the current Government is doing. His dissatisfaction, of course, is merely a means of ideologically settling the score with the Government. He has already expressed critical concerns about the feasibility of the recommendations of the National Institute of Public Health (Nacionalni inštitut za javno zdravje – NIJZ) which were prepared for the reopening of kindergartens and schools, and also pointed out the alleged ambiguities in the circulars prepared by the Ministry of Education, Science and Sport (MIZŠ). Štrukelj is also convinced that Minister Simona Kustec, Ph. D., should have insisted that the responsibility for reopening of kindergartens and schools, based on the recommendations of the medical professionals, be fully assumed by the state.

Štrukelj is mainly putting pressure on Minister Kustec because of the financial side of the matter, namely, as can be seen from the announcement, “the evaluation of additional work of all employees in the education sector, which can be assessed when taking the health recommendations that were prepared for the reopening of schools and kindergartens into account, is a very important issue.” The Minister has already met with SVIZ on May 13th to discuss this topic, and the meeting was then continued by the Secretary of State, Damir Orehovec, but apparently, some greedy individuals want even more. Branimir Štrukelj and the President of SVIZ, Jelka Velički, are continuing to incite the members of the union further, and demand that the Ministry sign the written agreement with them, on the payment for additional work under special circumstances due to the restrictions caused by the epidemic. What’s more, Štrukelj even involved the music schools in his ideological fight! If the agreement is not reached by the beginning of June 2020, Štrukelj and Velički announced that the pressure would increase.

Not only is he one of the best-paid officials, Štrukelj is also a real estate mogul!
However, what needs to be understood is that the trade unionist Štrukelj is mostly fighting for his own privileges, and his salary is much higher than the average Slovenian salary. Namely, for years now, Štrukelj has been considered one of the best-paid officials in the country. According to our information, his salary amounts to more than 5,000 euros per month, and of course, various fees, like the attendance fees, and others, must be added to this. Due to such high inflows, it is no wonder that Štrukelj is a real estate mogul. As we have already revealed in one of the previous articles, he also owns a house on Cerkljanski vrh, which is located in the north coastal part of Slovenia. Štrukelj, a trade unionist who had been called Tito in the past, is practically a real estate collector, so the Commission for the Prevention of Corruption (Komisija za preprečevanje korupcije – KPK) should really finally take him under scrutiny.

Štrukelj is also making additional earnings as a member of various supervisory boards. One of the better-known cases is the one where he received as much as 3,905 euros from Modra zavarovalnica for a meeting fee because he was a member of the supervisory board there (the data is from 2016)! Štrukelj is still a member of the supervisory board in the same company, and believe me, he is probably not there for free. Now try and calculate how many months a primary school teacher, a kindergarten teacher, or a music school teacher should work to earn the same amount of money. Are you still convinced that Štrukelj is fighting for their rights?

In 2012, Janez Janša had already pointed out that Štrukelj is earning more per month with various meeting fees and his salary than the President of the Republic of Slovenia himself. At the time, Štrukelj denied this, saying that his salary was “only” 3,944.73 euros gross. According to SVIZ, Štrukelj has received an average of 905,39 euros gross per month as a state councilor, and 276 euros gross as a member of the supervisory board of Modra zavarovalnica. The gross salary and gross attendance fees (Modra Zavarovalnica, the National Council) thus amount to a total of 5,125.12 euros per month, Štruklej said, which is only a few euros from the salary of the President of the Republic, which makes Janša’s point that much clearer.

Slovenske novice also wrote about the high amounts in Štrukelj’s bank account: Borut Pahor’s Government appointed Štrukelj to the post of a member of the supervisory board of Kapitalska družba, where he received 8,709 euros gross in 2009 and 2010 with attendance fees.

And today, the same Štrukelj, who is still a member of the supervisory board of Modra zavarovalnica, as well as the General Secretary of SVIZ, is complaining more than all the teachers and educators combined.

Barbara Majdič