Ministry: OLaNO-NOVA’s ‘Uninformed’ Attack Prompted by Our Success 

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Education, Science, Research and Sport Minister Peter Plavcan (stock photo by TASR)

Bratislava, July 25 (TASR) – The Education, Science, Research and Sport Ministry views claims by the Opposition OLaNO-NOVA party about calls for proposals towards research and innovations as an attack that is informed by its ignorance of the issue and comes in response to the ministry’s accomplishments under the tenure of current minister Peter Plavcan (a Slovak National Party/SNS nominee), TASR learnt from ministry spokesperson Ivana Skokanova on Tuesday.

“Under the remit of its current minister, the ministry has drafted a number of important proposals that it’s now implementing gradually in practice. In addition, it’s been improving the working conditions of teachers and introducing record increases in the salaries of teachers, as also evidenced by another salary increase in September 2017 that was approved by the Slovak Government yesterday [Monday]. This may be viewed as a historic feat of the Slovak National Party,” said Skokanova.

She stressed that the calls for proposals are aimed not only at research per se, but also at providing collaboration between businesses and academia or other research institutions involved in the projects via partnerships.

The spokesperson also referred to the minister’s statements to the effect that a review of the decisions to distribute the funds is still ongoing.

“The minister cares about making sure that the entire process was totally transparent and impervious to doubt,” she said.

OLaNO-NOVA’s Veronika Remisova said that the party will seek Plavcan’s ouster via a parliamentary no-confidence motion. The party decries what it sees as the absence of independence and expertise on the part of people evaluating calls for EU-funded projects towards research and innovations.