As Index writes, some statements are too much even for Croatia. It is one thing to cover one’s ears, remain silent, and not admit responsibility for certain failures, and it is quite another to claim that these failures are proof of the abilities, moral qualities, and work of those who are responsible for them.
Plenković says that he should be congratulated after the theft of the century
This is what Andrej Plenković said at the press conference after the coalition meeting of the ruling parties where the INA case was discussed: “The key message is that the institutions of the Croatian state, rather the government, were the ones who discovered this case of abuse, not the police or the judicial authorities, but the Office for the Prevention of Money Laundering, a department within the Ministry of Finance”. He added that the opposition, instead of demanding elections, should – congratulate the government.
But the facts do not support his arrogant statements. Not only did the government not detect the theft of the century, but it also directly facilitated it. This is the real truth, and it is not difficult to prove it, no matter what Plenković arrogantly claims.
Plenković and the HDZ government directly appointed the INA Administration, at which he is now theatrically “furious”
First of all, the Prime Minister, who claims to be furious with the INA Board, should be reminded that he appointed the people who make up the Croatian quota. According to the agreement, Croatia has the right to three members of the INA Management Board, and they are appointed by the government.
In 2020, Plenković, i.e., the government, appointed Croatian members of the Management Board, with whom the same Plenković is now theatrically “furious”. On March 31 of that year, a meeting of the Supervisory Board of INA was held, where new members of the company’s Management Board were appointed at the proposal of the government, led by Andrej Plenković: Barbara Dorić, Darko Markotić, and Niko Dalić.
They were the replacement of the previous members, who were also appointed by the HDZ government in 2011, and the prime minister and leader of the HDZ at that time was Jadranka Kosor.
If the Administration appointed by Plenković had done its job, there would have been no theft
If the Board had done its job the case wouldn’t exist, and the Board was appointed by Plenković himself. Admittedly, he only replaced the former HDZ members with a new set, except for one man. That is Niko Dalić, who has been on the INA Management Board for more than a decade. Jadranka Kosor appointed him there in 2011.
If that name doesn’t ring a bell, remember who managed Agrokor during its collapse and who the ringleader was of the Borg group. For her “services”, she was awarded the position of president of the Podravka Management Board in February of this year, which was personally advocated by Plenković. She was even at his place for a kind of job interview, which the media and economists interpreted as the prime minister’s direct recruitment in a state-owned company.
Niko Dalić from the INA Management Board is, of course, the husband of Martina Dalić, the Minister of Finance in Plenković’s government, who was appointed head of Podravka by Plenković and who led, to put it mildly, the dubious “restructuring” of Agrokor. He is much less exposed in the media, but that is why he survived a whole decade on the INA Management Board.
He was the only one who survived Plenković’s change of Croatian members. A trustworthy man, one would say. The current government did not only appoint the Management Board of INA, but also appointed HDZ member Damir Mikuljan as president of the Supervisory Board at the end of last year, and Davor Filipović, a man who had previously been spectacularly defeated in the elections for mayor of Zagreb, as a member.
HDZ minister was informed that Ina was losing money. He did nothing and could have prevented the theft
In an interview for N1, Damir Vanđelić, the former head of the Supervisory Board of INA, who was replaced by Damir Mikuljan in December 2021, said that he had informed the authorities, including the then HDZ Minister of Economy Tomislav Ćorić, that INA was losing money.
By the way, Damir Mikuljan, who replaced Damir Vanđelić, is the head of something called the Honorable Court of the HDZ. He will probably decide on the party line of the alleged organiser of the theft of the century, Damir Škugor. The arrested Škugor was also the man of honor for HDZ general secretary Krunoslav Katičić.
That Škugor is active in HDZ was revealed through photos of him hugging Plenković himself and the President of the Croatian Parliament, Goran Jandroković, although the government spokesman claimed before the photos were published that the Prime Minister did not know him.
“Last year in May, we reacted to the Supervisory Board and asked for a session because eight people in high positions in INA were dismissed,” said Vanđelić. “I put the topic on for the Supervisory Board at that time, that is May 2021, I asked in English what the plan was when eight people were dismissed. I didn’t know about Škugor at the time, but something was happening. Eight good people were dismissed then, they were paid severance pay to leave. That’s why I asked what the plan was. We did not receive satisfactory answers.”
“The answer was that they were improving the organisation,” he added. “I didn’t get any answer. I got some calls, mocking us from Supervisory Board because we are problematising the topics of staffing and gas business,” he said. “Ćorić told me to politicise and do some other business”.
HDZ’s Čorić responded: “Vanđelic is very creative in presenting alternative facts”. After that statement, evidence was published, an e-mail in which Vanđelić stated that he noticed the “leakage of funds from INA” and informed Ćorić about the problem. Vanđelić sent the mail to his colleagues in the Supervisory Board two weeks earlier and then forwarded it to Ćorić, in which he compared the operations of INA and MOL.
Soon after that, he was removed from the head of the Supervisory Board and was replaced by the previously mentioned Damir Mikuljan, head of the Honorable Court of HDZ.
It is not difficult to notice that just last year, while the theft of the century was taking place, HDZ’s staffing in INA was going on. It is arrogant and insulting to the intelligence of the citizens that Plenković claims that the government exposed the theft. By all accounts, the government directly set up Škugor and all the others who made a billion kuna disappear right in front of their noses.
Rakar: The theft was discovered by the banks. It is impossible to declare this a discovery of the government
HDZ’s responsibility does not end with staffing at INA. The government is, of course, only a branch of HDZ, and HDZ recruits all over the country.
“I don’t see how it is possible to declare the fact that the banks discovered a suspicious payment to the account of a natural person (in no less than a nine-digit amount in kuna) a victory or a great discovery when that same money was created by manipulation and de facto theft from an extremely organised company traded on the stock exchange in which the Republic of Croatia possesses almost 50 percent of the ownership, the president and several members of the Supervisory Board and several members of the company’s Management Board. In addition, the entire operation took place through another company, which is owned by a utility company owned by the county, and CroPlin (which is 100% owned by the same INA)”, Marko Rakar from the Association of Authorized Fraud Investigators told Index.
“This is proof that the mechanisms of management, control, and supervision in a whole series of companies, but also the state and counties, have completely failed”, he concluded.
One of the channels through which money was extracted from INA is The Gas Company of Eastern Slavonia, headed by Marija Ratkić, also a member of HDZ. She defended herself before USKOK that she was only carrying out the orders of her party colleague Damir Škugor.
The Gas Plant Eastern Slavonia is owned by the Vukovar-Srijem County, whose prefect is Damir Dekanić. You guessed it, he is also an HDZ member. He has been a member since 1990 and since 2020 the vice president of the party in Vukovar-Srijem County. You don’t need to guess a lot to conclude which party is recruiting in Plinara of Eastern Slavonia.
Fina praised the company through which the theft from INA happened. And Fina, of course, is managed by HDZ
The ones who reported the suspicious events that led to the exposure of the theft of the century in Croatia are – private banks. And in addition to the internal controls of INA and Gas Plant Eastern Slavonia at least two state institutions, Fina and the Tax Administration, also failed.
The first one had all the information related to the company OMS-Upravljanje d.o.o., through which money was primarily extracted from INA. “The small and micro-entrepreneurs with the highest profit for the period in 2021 were: CENTRICE ZAGREB d.o.o., HT HOLDING d.o.o. and SUPERNOVA BUZIN d.o.o. (small) and CENTAR BUNDEK d.o.o. in bankruptcy, BELVEDERE d.d. in bankruptcy and OMS-UPRALJANJE d.o.o. (micro)”, announced Fina in a press release just two months ago.
According to information from Fina, OMS-Upravljanje is in third place among the micro-entrepreneurs with the highest profit. Their profit was HRK 117 million 277 thousand. In 2021, OMS-Upravljanje had a higher profit than all those who were on the list of the top 5 small entrepreneurs.
The fact that a micro-company with one employee founded in 2019 had a higher profit than most medium-sized entrepreneurs, which have from 50 to 250 employees, should have immediately set off an alarm in Fina. But nobody reacted, and by chance or not, the head of Fina is another HDZ member, Dražen Čović.
Plenković insults the intelligence of citizens
Nothing was suspicious, and no one knew anything. And many not only could but had to know. They get paid to do it. Internal control and management of INA, external auditors of INA, internal control and external auditors of Gas Plant Eastern Slavonia, FINA, Tax Administration, and many others.
The impression is that many people knew, or at least more than have been arrested (so far). HDZ appears in one way or another connected with the name of everyone involved with this theft of the century, whether it was a person directly involved or someone who should have reacted to obvious signs that something strange was going on.
If Plenković had just said today that HDZ and the government have nothing to do with what is happening around INA, it would be a blatant lie. Claiming that the HDZ government is responsible for uncovering the looting is a step beyond lying, making fools of the citizens of the Republic of Croatia.
The arrogance of that statement alone is enough for resignation, and as it has been proven that HDZ and Plenković directly staffed INA while the theft of the century was taking place, the resignation should be insisted on because of the direct responsibility for the disappearance of billions of kuna.
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