Lithuanian plates on poles, bilingual on houses

Fot. wilnoteka.lt

In Ejszyszki all streets already have new labels. At the beginning and at the end of every street there are now poles with the street name in Lithuanian. Similar boards will turn up in all towns of the Šalčininkai District Municipality. The representative of the government of the Vilnius district stated that the Self-government of the Šalčininkai District Municipality had carried out a court decision ordering the removal of non-Lithuanian plates.

“I hope that the problem of plates is definitively settled. The self-government will be carrying out its functions in regard to marking streets, roads and towns; however residents will have a right to put plates in their mother tongue on their houses, in case of our district – in Polish. The plate hanging on the house is a property of the homeowner – this is the way we see it”, said in a conversation with Wilnoteka Józef Rybak, the president of the Administration department of the self-government body of the Šalčininkai District Municipality.

Józef Rybak is the head of the department from June 2014. He “inherited” the problem of bilingual plates on the houses after his predecessor Boleslaw Daszkiewicz. In May 2014 Bolesław Daszkiewicz paid a fine for those plates in the amount of over 47 thousand litas. However the matter wasn’t closed; bailiffs pursued the new head of regional administration, demanding the execution of two court decisions: from 2008 and 2013. At the beginning of October 2014 the president of the administration department of the self-government body of the Šalčininkai District Municipality sent a letter to the District Court in Druskienniki, announcing that the court decision was carried out. Photographs were attached to the letter.

Audrius Skaistys, the representative of the government in the Vilnius district, declared that the matter can be closed, and the residents won’t be punished provided that the self-government marks the streets in accordance with the regulation of the Minister of the Interior of the Republic of Lithuania from March 2014. “The representative of the government was in Ejszyszki, we drove together around the city, and he could see the plates on private houses and the new plates on the streets. He said that everything was good”, informed Tadeusz Zimiński, head of the Ejszyszki Municipality.

According to the recalled regulation, plates with names of the streets must be put on metal poles placed on the territories that are under the management of the self-government. The authorities are implementing this regulation right now. “We are doing what our finances allow us. We have 450 towns in the district. Every house, even in the most distant village, has its address; unfortunately, we are not able to simultaneously put up plates in all towns. In the self-government budget for 2014 funds for this purpose weren’t included. First, we installed poles with names of streets in the biggest “hotspots”, among others in Ejszyszki and Jaszuny. The cost of one pole with the plate is about 120 litas plus the costs of assembling it. In Ejszyszki, 76 new poles were installed. We will ask the representative of the government of the Vilnius district to give us more time to mark streets in the entire district”, said Józef Rybak.

Bilingual plates are still hanging on many houses in Ejszyszki and in other towns of the Šalčininkai District Municipality. Some are decorative and serve as an adornment. Józef Rybak told Wilnoteka that he isn’t able to give a specific number, but supposes, that now, when self-government authorities marked streets in accordance with the regulation of the Minister of the Interior, the plates that will appear on some houses are new or ones that were earlier removed.

In the conversation with Wilnoteka, residents of Ejszyszki said that they won’t remove the plates, but have already had enough of this subject. “Poles constitute 90 percent of the residents of Ejszyszki. Polish language is for us a thing from which we cannot resign, but there are more considerable, more important problems in the country, which both politicians and media should deal with”, said a resident of Ejszyszki, Mirosław Bogdziun.

The president of the Administration department of the self-government body of the Šalčininkai District Municipality informed that soon new boards with tourist information will turn up in the following languages: Lithuanian and Polish. Lithuanian law allows putting up tourist information in languages other than the national one.

Adapted from Inf.wł.

Source: http://www.wilnoteka.lt/pl/artykul/litewskie-tabliczki-na-slupach-dwujezyczne-na-domach

Tłumaczenie by Anna Wójcik w ramach praktyk w Europejskiej Fundacji Praw Człowieka, www.efhr.eu. Translated by Anna Wójcik within the framework of a traineeship programme of the European Foundation of Human Rights, www.efhr.eu.

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