published: 01.08.2012, 00:36 | updated: 01.08.2012 00:43:23
Prague - Czech state offices should release the salaries of their senior officials on their own to prevent speculations and legal complaints, Tomas Nemecek writes in the daily Lidove noviny (LN) today.
He reacts to the fact that the Presidential Office has lately lost a court dispute with the daily that has demanded information on the pay level of the office´s high clerks, such as its head and President Vaclav Klaus´s secretary.
Nemecek admits that to top civil servants should receive top salaries. However, the transparency level in the Czech Republic needs to be improved to make even the president, ministers and state companies´ directors realise that they are not distributing their own but tax payers´ money.
Concrete senior officials´ pay level is made public only in a few advanced countries, such as Finland, Sweden and the United States, while others, including France and Greece, keep them secret as a matter of principle, Nemecek adds.
Czech offices may let it up to court disputes and a spontaneous development or they may take an efficient preventive step and release the salaries of their senior officials in their annual reports and the Czech Republic would thus enter "the first league in transparency," Nemecek writes in LN.
A tunnel may become a symbol of the Czech general election in 2014, Jindrich Sidlo writes in Hospodarske noviny (HN) today, commenting on the planned opening of the grossly overpriced Blanka tunnel in Prague in May 2014.
He adds that it will be rather "a mourning ceremony."
Sidlo recalls that the tunnel, which was to be opened at the end of 2012, will cost a total of 36 billion crowns, which is some ten billion crowns more than the original calculation.
Consequently, its opening closely ahead of parliamentary elections and a few months before local polls will be a serious problem for Prague Mayor Bohuslav Svoboda who will then probably be a member of the ruling Civic Democratic Party´s (ODS) internal leadership, Sidlo writes.
Svoboda has been trying to give a new face to the ODS in Prague, which is the party´s most significant place in the country in terms of election results.
Unfortunately he cannot get rid of the heritage from the era of his ill-famed predecessor, former Prague mayor Pavel Bem (ODS), Sidlo points out.
The billboards of the opposition Social Democrats (CSSD) ahead of the autumn regional and Senate elections are not only tasteless but also demagogic, Jana Bendova writes in Mlada fronta Dnes (MfD) today.
The billboards show, for instance, "an evil blue hand" (the colour of the senior government Civic Democrats) stealing a wallet from someone else´s pocket and a hand of a clergyman looting a sack of money from the restitution, hinting at the government bill on the return of the churches´ property confiscated under the communist regime, Bendova says.
Though marketing experts claim that a negative advertisement is not very efficient and it makes no pleasant impression either, the Social Democrats do not believe their advice, Bendova notes.
However, a billboard speaking about "a gift of 134 billion crowns to churches" is a pure demagogy since the state is not donating any money to churches but only a part of their stolen property is to be returned to them, Bendova points out.
Moreover, it is striking that the demagogic idea was created in the CSSD´s seat, a lucrative complex in Prague´s historical centre that was also returned to the party within the property restitution process, Bendova writes in MfD.
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