Bratislava, February 7 (TASR) – A total of €50 million will be used to restore university halls of residence, with €20 million to be spent this year, while if more funds are needed for their reconstruction, they will be allocated, Prime Minister Robert Fico (Smer-SD) stated after a meeting with university rectors on Wednesday.
“No government has so far openly spoken about money for the reconstruction of university halls of residence. I’m asking everyone to check if Mikulas Dzurinda, Iveta Radicova or other rightist politicians said that they wanted to provide money for halls of residence or that they would launch free-of-charge travel on trains,” said the premier, adding that he stated in 2016 that there was a need to renovate dorms. “We stated in the Government Manifesto that we wanted to prepare reasonable financing for reconstructing university dorms. And that’s what’s happened this year,” he said.
The prime minister stressed that his partners in the negotiations are university rectors. “It’s unrealistic to spend €50 million this year due to the difficulties and nature of public procurements,” he said, noting that if the rectors exceed the amount of €20 million this year, they will still get the money.
“I welcome our agreement, it’s fair. We’ve confirmed the process we identified two years ago,” said chairman of the Slovak Rectors Conference Rudolf Kropil. Education, Science, Research and Sport Minister Martina Lubyova (a Slovak National Party/SNS nominee) pointed out that for the first time in 30 years the country has managed to decide on a systemic and mass reconstruction of university halls of residence.