Duris Nicholsonova Files Criminal Complaint over Danko’s Rigorous Thesis

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Lucia Duris Nicholsonova (photo by TASR)

Bratislava, October 16 (TASR) – Parliamentary Vice-chair Lucia Duris Nicholsonova (Freedom and Solidarity/SaS) filed a criminal complaint with the Prosecutor General’s (PG) Office over Parliamentary Chairman Andrej Danko’s (Slovak National Party/SNS) rigorous thesis on Tuesday.

Duris Nicholsonova also asks the PG Office to examine whether the procedure followed by Banska Bystrica-based Matej Bel University (UMB) didn’t contradict the law.

Duris Nicholsonova decided to file a criminal complaint over the suspicion that the public official’s powers were misused, as there are obscurities in the whole case. “The question arises here whether somebody might have committed an unlawful act to help cover potential plagiarism, which might mean the crime of exceeding a public official’s powers in relation to Mr. Danko as a public official,” she said.

According to Duris Nicholsonova, law-enforcement authorities should examine the whole situation within criminal proceedings. The request that the PG Office should examine the lawfulness of the university’s procedure in this issue is related to this, too.

Based on the legal analysis, Duris Nicholsonova assumes that the university might have acted in contradiction to the law. “Legal opinions exist, and our legal analysis is based on them, that somebody in UMB management might have acted in an unlawful manner, since the UMB’s procedure, namely concealing or limiting access to a rigorous thesis, bears features of retroactivity. Mr. Danko submitted his rigorous theses in 2000 when it was governed by a completely different legislation that didn’t enable signing a licence agreement that would allow for concealing a rigorous thesis or limiting access to it,” said Duris Nicholsonova.

“Parliamentary Chairman Andrej Danko won’t comment on steps taken by Duris Nicholsonova. Let everybody make their own opinion on the issue,” said Danko’s spokesperson Tomas Kostelnik in a reaction to Duris Nicholsonova’s steps.

The UMB management has called on Danko to make his rigorous thesis public. Danko responded to the call by saying that the rigorous thesis in question isn’t confidential and that the authorised persons have access to it any time. Politics doesn’t belong on academic soil, he said.

Some media have cast doubts on Danko’s JUDr. title he obtained at the Matej Bel University. Danko said in late-September that he acquired the title in question in a legal fashion and he views the articles published by some media as an effort to slander him with respect to his potential presidential candidacy.