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Monitor Daily Newspaper, June 3, 2002 (No. 1159/2002)

Municipal Councillor Maria Kharbova:
Deputy Mayor Boris Spirov Does Not Let Anyone Get Into The Dogs' Shelter
He does not perform his obligations, I shall demand a penalty, the dismissed head of the Environmental Commission at the Sofia Municipal Council says

(Interview taken from Mrs Maria Kharbova, municipal councillor of the city of Sofia)

Mrs Kharbova, you are a municipal councillor and head of the environmental commission at the Sofia Municipal Council. Are there any problems with the dogs' shelter in Lozenetz?

Copy of the article Obviously, there is a problem. As a municipal councillor and head of the environmental commission, I was not allowed to get into the shelter last week. I was together with a colleague of mine, a municipal councillor, and a team of the Bulgarian National Television, who wanted to make a film about the shelter. I had to call for the Egida Security Company. A regional chief of the municipal Security Company came, but with him only the municipal councillors were allowed to get in, no further than the space around the entrance. A person by the name of Bisser appeared; he did not even give his family name. He stated that the boss of the shelter had banned the admission of anyone in. I re-emphasise that the shelter is municipal and has been set up by a decision of the Sofia Municipal Council of the Capital.

What reasons did they give you from the shelter?

None, whatever. They only said that there was a ban on my entering there. Only Mr Boris Spirov, the Deputy Mayor responsible for the dogs, and his team were admitted, as well as Mayor Sofianski.

You do not happen to have any personal conflicts with Boris Spirov for him to have a reason for not admitting you in, do you?

Last week scores of citizens of the capital waited in front of the gates of the dogs' shelter in Lozenetz, after their pet dogs had disappeared during night round-ups in the neighbourhood of the National Palace of Culture I do not. But it has turned out that the municipal councillors, who are to control the local municipal authorities, cannot go beyond the barrier. Should a parliamentarian even go there, he would not be let in, either. And it is written on our municipal cards that we must be allowed everywhere. We are, anyway, the control body.

Will you inform Mayor Stefan Sofianski about the occasion?

I shall do it one of these days. This is a flagrant violation of the laws; it cannot go on like this.

As a municipal councillor, according to the law you are fully entitled to demand a sanction by the Sofia Municipal Council for this deputy mayor, are you not?

And I shall do it. He does not fulfill his obligations. There is a programme on dogs which has been voted, but so far nothing has been done about it; this is a disgrace.

Did you go to the dogs' shelter propmpted by information of irregularities?

Yes, I did; plenty of irregularities. Antoan Nicolov, Chairman of Sofia Municipal Council, sent me to see how matters stood, because he has been overwhelmed by complaints by citizens.

The interview was taken by Malina Angareva


Published in the Monitor Daily Newspaper, No. 1159, June 3, 2002 (page 9)

Published in the Website on June 6, 2002
©2002, by Malina Angareva, for this interview
©2002, by Monitor Daily Newspaper, for the publication
©2002, by Nina Panova, for the translation in English
©2002, by, for this online version of the text