Deputy Minister of Economy Alexander Manolev submitted resignation on 17th of April and Prime Minister Boyko Borissov accepted it. The move comes hours after the Prosecutor’s office announced it launches an investigation into Manolev for alleged misappropriation of European funds.
Manolev explained he does not want the investigation against him to affect the government's work.
The prosecutor’s office started the investigation following media reports alleging Manolev that he build a guest house near the South Bulgarian town of Sandanski with money from the European funds, but used the property for personal purposes.
According to the publications, the property is part of a project funded with BGN 380,000 under the Rural Development Programme and the payment was approved by the State Fund “Agriculture” in December 2015, when Manolev was appointed Deputy Minister of Tourism.
In the recent weeks, a succession of investigations were launched into top Bulgarian politicians in connection with alleged irregularities in transactiions for acquisition of properties. Justice Minister and two deputy ministers have resigned, as well as the deputy leader of Borissov’s GERB party, who resigned as an MP.
In the motives for his resignation, Manolev states that he is solidary with his colleagues who have complied with the ethics standard of the government and have resigned only because of suspicions. He also states that his decision was personal. He denied wrongdoing.