Strike questions logic of boss's reprimand

  • 2004-08-05
  • Baltic News Service
RIGA - A month-long probe by the Corruption Prevention and Control Bureau into former acting chief Juta Strike ended with the bureau's current chief Aleksejs Loskutovs making a verbal reprimand to his former superior.

CPCB said in a statement that the in-house investigation panel had concluded that Strike violated Cabinet of Ministers' regulations on the protection of state secrets and classified information by signing a letter to the security police in which she requested that the security clearance of a CPCB official be annulled.
A CPCB spokeswoman said that such requests could only be made by the head of an agency, whereas Strike had signed the letter when she was deputy chief.
Strike said that both the in-house investigation and the verbal reprimand were ungrounded.
She questioned why she apparently had no right to sign a letter to the security police, while the probe found nothing wrong with almost identical letters she had sent to the Prosecutor General's Office and the Constitution Protection Office, the nation's top security agency.
Strike said she was not going to appeal against the commission's findings, since "a verbal reprimand was not a disciplinary punishment."
She regretted that the probe had lasted as long as it did.
"It made work difficult for myself and my subordinates because neither I nor they knew for how long we'd still be working here," she said, adding that she was committed to continue working for the bureau.
CPCB chief Aleksejs Loskutovs was not available for comment.
During the rule of the previous government, the then-Prime Minister Einars Repse appointed Strike as head of the anti-corruption outfit even after Parliament twice refused to confirm her. Many analysts claimed that the lawmakers' rejection of Strike had been motivated more against Repse rather than the 33-year-old lawyer herself.
Upon taking over government, Prime Minister Indulis Emsis immediately set to finding a new anti-corruption boss.
Strike applied for the job, but the commission picked her former subordinate Aleksejs Loskutovs for the post, while Strike was made deputy chief.
The two have a difficult relationship at best. While she was still acting CPCB chief, Strike initiated a probe against Loskutovs for allegedly botching the work on the bureau's long-term anti-corruption strategy.
There were reports that upon taking the office Loskutovs had hinted that Strike should resign.