After the EAPL left the coalition, it lost not only the secretary post, but also four undersecretaries. The undersecretaries asked by the zw.lt replied that they do not regret their choice from one and a half year ago, because the job was interesting, and also many important project were carried out or started.
The EAPL had five undersecretaries: Edward Trusewicz in the Department of Culture, Edyta Tamošiūnaitė in the Department of Education and Science, Władysław Kondratowicz in the Department of Transport , Leokadia Poczykowska in the Department of Agriculture and Renata Cytacka in the Department of Energy.
Trusewicz: The fight about the Law are still going on.
Apart from Renata Cytacka, because of whom the EAPL has de facto left the coalition, the most discussions concerned Edward Trusewicz. He was responsible for compiling of the draft of the Law on national minorities. “How were the things with the draft of the Law on national minorities is a general knowledge. I started the legislative process of this draft with a quiet agreement with the secretary. There are the conclusions of the interested institutions. The only thing left was to give it for the discussion of the government. There, however, a fight is going on, triggered by the hostile people…” – Trusewicz explained the situation to zw.lt in a couple of sentences.
Nevertheless the undersecretary delegated by the EAPL is content with his work. Apart from the issues of the national minorities, the archives were in his scope of competence. “A kind of an achievement of the Department of Culture is the optimisation of the net of the state archives, i.e. not decreasing its number in the country, but joining them together: narrowing of the administrative apparatus and at the cost of that – increasing the number of specialists. Alongside that the digitisation of the state archives has started. Many of the services will be available through the Internet. Supposedly it is an obvious thing, but unfortunately up till now it has not been implemented. “ – replied the undersecretary.
Much has been done in the issue of obtaining of European structural funds for the Department of Culture. “It was an arduous, but also an interesting job. I saw a sense in it and eagerly spent much time on preparing the programme documents for the next financial years 2014-2020. We were seven years behind, because the other departments were already using the European Union funds in the period of 2007-2013, so we had to catch up with many things” – added the former head of the department of culture.
Despite many duties the undersecretary did not forget about the national minorities. „I was directly responsible for the re-examination of the sector of culture, i.e. the cultural services in the whole country. The Department of Culture is finally in possession of accurate information and numbers: what is the need for cultural services, what and where needs to be corrected, to what niches bigger funds should be allocated. Unfortunately, up till now it has been more inertial and made ad hoc. The information that we had gathered and the results of the research will be useful in i.a. debates concerning the budget for year 2015. Up till now the numbers were taken from nowhere, and to be more precise – from the year before. Nota bene, in the draft of the budget for year 2015 the funds for the projects for national minorities were increased by one million litas.” – emphasises the undersecretary with content. Adding that “The work on the post that I held, by being delegated there by the Electoral Action of Poles in Lithuania, was a very good and incredibly useful injection of life experience and work in the government from the inside.”
Kondratowicz: The life of the Vilnius Region will be significantly better.
The undersecretary of transport from the EAPL may be less known to the public opinion, because his immediate duties did not coincide with the postulates of the Polish minorities in Lithuania. “We were able to sign 1500 documents” – replies the undersecretary of transport Władysław Kondratowicz laughing. “It is hard to assess the results half way, because most of the projects connected with infrastructure or construction are long-term projects. For the realisation of them we sometimes have to wait two-three years” – said the former undersecretary.
Kondartowicz emphasised that much has been done with respect to public and local government roads. “There is a government project Road Supervision Programme, from which some of the money goes to the local governments. We were able to increase by 10 percent the sum going to the local government. We were also able to increase by 10 percent the financing of the programme itself. It can be said that the local governments will actually get two times more money for the roads than it was before. I do not claim that it is only thanks to me, although I contributed to it. It was also written in the electoral programme of the EAPL. Obviously without the support of the coalition partners we would not have been able to do it” – informed the undersecretary.
Much, according to him, has also been done for the Vilnius Region. “I really do not regret that I was the undersecretary, first of all that is a really good personal experience. Second of all, much has been done for the inhabitants of the Vilnius, Širvintos and Švenčionys Regions. Maybe they will not feel it directly, but there will be a lot of facilitation for the logistic and transport firms. It will improve the economic life of the Vilnius Region significantly” – emphasised Kondratowicz.
Tłumaczenie by Alicja Dudzik w ramach praktyk w Europejskiej Fundacji Praw Człowieka, www.efhr.eu. Translated by Alicja Dudzik within the framework of a traineeship programme of the European Foundation of Human Rights, www.efhr.eu.