Lithuanian economy minister resigns, acquiescing to president’s demands

The Lithuanian minister of economic affairs, Dainius Kreivys, resigned after having been accused of illegally helping his mother in gaining a public contract.

Yesterday, the State Ethics Commission had decided that Kreivys had acted unethically by approving of a contract with a company in which his mother held a significant share. Kreivys decision therefore suffered from a severe conflict of interest and violated the high standards which should be applied to the top-government officials, the commission told. According to the head of the commission, Kreivys – who had been a businessperson before entering politics – should have been aware of these problems and acted accordingly.

President Dalia Grybauskaite had previously expressed her distrust in minister Kreivys and demanded that he stepped down. Then, however, he was still defended by prime minister Kubilius who declared that especially because of his previous experience in the business world, Kreivys was a suitable candidate for the ministry. Furthermore, he stated that he could not see any misbehaviour on the minister’s part.

At a press conference, the ex-minister told journalists that he – as Bloomberg News quotes him – had been “been swamped with an avalanche of lies” and that he was going to appeal to the Commission’s decision in court.

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