Final Word from Monday, June 3, 2019

The EU Commission's preliminary audit report that was leaked to Hospodářské noviny on Fri. brings Andrej Babiš's conflict of interest front and center but could also mean big trouble for other Czech politicians and officials on all levels. The crux of the report is that the Commission's audit team has decided to interpret the Czech conflict-of-interest law itself, instead of leaving it to the Czech courts. This might very well be justified in terms of EU subsidies, but it by no means ends there. If Babiš or Agrofert is in violation of the so-called Lex Babiš restrictions on receiving EU funding starting on Feb. 9, 2017, (§ 4c of Law No. 159/2006 Sb.), this means that they are also in violation of the ban on taking part in public tenders (§ 4b). Furthermore, it could mean that other politicians or officials who have turned their interests over to a spouse or trust fund are also in violation of the law under § 3. This could finally be the conflict-of-interest cleanup Czechs have been avoiding. [ Czech Republic European Union subsidy 25% ownership ]

Glossary of difficult words

front and center - in or to the forefront of activity or consideration;

crux - the decisive or most important point at issue;

cleanup - an act of putting an end to immorality or crime.

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