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Polish PM backs Marek Belka over recordings scandal

Polish PM backs Marek Belka over recordings scandal
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The release of recordings of a conversation between Poland’s central bank governor and the interior minister has caused mixed reactions nationwide.

But on Monday Prime Minister Donald Tusk said Governor Marek Belka had not committed any crime when he was captured on tape using expletives about bank colleagues and discussing the removal of the finance minister.

Belka was apparently taped having the discussion with Interior Minister Bartlomiej Sienkiewicz in a restaurant in Warsaw in 2013.

The PM said he had no plans to yield to opposition demands for the government to resign.

“In this situation we are talking about a coup attempt, or an organised attempt to overthrow the government by illegal means,” said Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk.

“I will not make political decisions based on the material available so far. I’m focusing on clarifying this case and on providing stability of the state.”

Belka has been left open to accusations he violated rules stating the central bank and government should be independent of each other, particularly since Jacek Rostowski – the finance minister in question – left the government in November.

He and Tusk put his departure down to coincidence.

Polish law forbids the removal of bank governors unless they are convicted of crimes or are incapacitated through illness.