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Անկախ

The Prime Minister's verbal assurances on the expenditures do not inspire any confidence


Yesterday I took part in a remote meeting of the Board of Trustees of the Hayastan All Armenian fund. A topic of discussion was the issue of reporting 52 billion drams transferred by the All-Armenian Fund to the RA government during the war in Artsakh. The impressions of the discussion are disappointing. The Prime Minister unambiguously stated that 52 billion drams were contributed to the budget and spent with the general budget expenditures, making it impossible to specify what exactly the charitable funds were spent on. Meanwhile, according to the agreement between the government and the Fund, the government is obliged to provide reports on the funds received. The funds were supposed to be sent to a special account of the government, specifically created for this purpose, and spent from this account on urgent needs dictated by the situation caused by the war, excluding the possibility of the issue on reporting. I am not aware whether this was done intentionally or through negligence, but in fact, the reputation of the All-Armenian Fund is seriously damaged precisely because of the government's actions.

The Prime Minister's verbal assurances on the expenditures do not inspire any confidence. I cannot believe the assurances of the government, who deceived its own people about the real situation throughout the entire war, and continues to hide the number of deaths, missing people and prisoners of war even 4 months after the war. I do not understand the statement made on behalf of the Board of Trustees in this context. How can one be confident in advance of the Fund's targeted spending in the absence of all supporting documents? Given the setting, it is obvious that no audit will clarify the situation, but will only enhance the existing doubts. The only correct solution I see is to consider 52 billion drams as a government debt to the Fund to be returned within 3-5 years. The All-Armenian Fund, in turn, should spend these funds on numerous programs to cover the needs in Artsakh.

Robert Kocharyan

16.03.2021

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