• September 12, 2016
  • 243

The government representative: the bilingual street plaques have to be removed

The government representative in Vilnius region Vilda Vaičiūnienė, adressed a letter to the director of administration of Vilnius Council Alma Vaitkunskienė in which she demanded to remove the plaques with street names in foreign languages. If the government is not going to remove them, the representative will turn to a court- says 15min.lt portal. The mayor of Vilnius Remigijus Šimašius, hopes that the government „will clear the situation up with its representative on its own”.

According to Government Representative Service in Vilnius Region, Vaičiūnienė, demands to remove plaques inconsistent with the act of national language, which appoints versions of the names of streets which have not been legally registered: Rusu, Islandijos i Varšuvos and Vašingtono square. The service regarded that a plaque in polish with the writing Warsaw st. does not meet the design requirements –we read in 15min.lt. portal.

The council has got 10 days to give a response. If the demand is not achieved, a government representative will turn to a court. A few years ago, a court imposed a fine on administrative director of soleczniki region Boleslaw Daszkiewicz for bilingual plaques in the region.

“The government representative, in the conversation, in which appeared nationalistic accents, cannot distinguish the difference between the process of hanging bilingual plaques, in the whole city, how was in Soleczniki and what is decorating particular streets with one, original plaque. Of course, the State Commission of the Lithuanian Language, was content- we conferred with each other and we have found a common solution. Both the Government and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs were satisfied, because the plaque on Washington square we were hanging together. For sure, there will always be somebody who will not be satisfied”- passed the mayor’s of Vilnius view council.

The two last plaques – in Polish and Russian –were hung at the beginning of September.

“ For a long time, I have been convinced that we have to get to such mutual gestures. Besides, we have more such gestures. For instance, in the council we provide our clients with service in four languages, including Polish. We have a Polish version of our website. Moreover, in the council, we are convinced, that in official documents, the surnames can be written in original forms. Therefore, such gestures, and unveiling such plaques prove, that we are becoming more and more tolerant” – stressed, in the conversation with journalists, mayor Remigijus Šimašius.

Translated by Aneta Banacka within the framework of a traineeship programme of the European Foundation of Human Rights, www.efhr.eu.

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