Rusnok: The missing background check may prevent Michl from performing his duties properly

Rusnok: The missing background check may prevent Michl from performing his duties properly

Rusnok: Missing background check may prevent Michl from performing his duties properly

Illustrative photo – Member of the bank board Aleš Michl came to Prague Castle with current governor Jiří Rusnok (left) for the appointment of the new governor of the Czech National Bank, May 11, 2022.

Prague – The absence of the highest level of security clearance may prevent the governor of the Czech National Bank (ČNB) Aleš Michl from fully performing his duties. Former CNB Governor Jiří Rusnok and former chairwoman of the Commission for Fair Pensions Danuše Nerudová stated this today in the Otázky Václav Moravec program of Czech Television (ČT). The Echo24 server wrote on Saturday that Michl has been waiting for the top clearance since last May, the standard deadline for issuing a top-secret clearance expired this week.

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According to the server, as a member of the banking board of the CNB, Michl was the holder of a clearance at the level of secret, he applied for the highest level in May after President Miloš Zeman announced his appointment as governor of the CNB. The National Security Office (NSB) has a nine-month deadline for such proceedings. CNB Communications Director Petra Krmelová confirmed to Echu24 that Michl did not receive the highest level of vetting within the nine-month period. The procedure has not yet been completed.

Rusnok said in ČT that when he himself had to apply for a higher level of vetting, the process took about four months. “It would be something we have never experienced, all governors have obtained this degree and had a valid background check,” he said of the possibility that Michl would not succeed in the process. According to him, the requirement for the highest level is set by the CNB's internal regulations.

According to Nerudová, the lack of background checks can threaten the credibility of the central bank and prevent the governor from fully performing his duties. He would not be able to obtain all the classified information necessary for the proceedings of the government or the State Security Council.

Krmelová told the Echo24 server that it is necessary to take into account the fact that there was a state of emergency in the Czech Republic at the time of the application, during which time limits do not run. However, the spokesperson of the office, Jaromír Kadlec, stated that “in the vast majority of cases, the security procedure is completed before the expiration of the basic period”, added the server. The statistics of the National Bureau of Statistics show that half of the background checks in the case involving Michlo are issued no later than four months after the application was submitted. Vladimir Kruliš. According to Krmelová's later statement, the CNB Bank Board has not yet decided on filling the position. Rusnok criticized Kruliš's possible entry today. “Perhaps he is a great person for another position, but definitely not for this one,” stated Rusnok.

According to him, this is an important position, a person who takes care of the entire council and is constantly present at its meetings. “For 30 years, he was a person who came from within the CNB, which he must know perfectly,” said Rusnok. To organize the operation of the CNB, it is necessary to know all operations, he added. “From a purely personalistic point of view, it seems unfortunate to me to take someone from the outside, no matter how brilliant,” he added.