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The Hunger for Dignity by Bossia

2018.08.31 Няма коментари
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by Vihren Mihaylov

Nikolay Kolev Bossia about a month ago, at a parliamentary committee meeting. Photo: BNR

If the Hunger Strike by Oleg Sentsov is against the initiation of inter-state conflict, the Hunger Strike by Nikolay Kolev – Bossia is an opposition to the already initiated interstate, national break-down.

The Bulgarian citizen Nikolay Kolev – Bossia is on a hunger strike since 13th of June 2018 as a last resort and a drastic opposition to the treacherous state-run criminality and social disintegration secured and carefully guarded by all institutions.

Nikolay Ganchev Kolev, known as Nikolay Kolev – Bossia, is a Bulgarian dissident, poet and journalist; he is the founder of the first independent syndicate in Bulgaria, chairman of the Independent Society for the Protection of Human Rights from June 1990 till July 1992. He has graduated from the Russian Foreign Language High School in Stara Zagora after which he has studied Russian philology in Sofia University. He has done almost any job afterwards from manual labourer to a poet. He has been to prison several times in Stara Zagora and Sofia prison for his political activity before 10 November 1989. He is the author of political jokes and epigrams about the then dictator – Todor Zhivkov. He is also popular with the numerous hunger strikes he has done, his out-of-the-common points of view, and his strong-willed character. He is the author of 4 books and many publications. Father of 5 daughters.

Bossia’s cause against the transport mafia, setting the prerequisites for death and lifelong disabilities, started in the end of 2014 after numerous approaches to Bulgarian and European competent institutions made by the state official in the Ministry of Transport – Eng. Ivo Krastev as early as 2010. After many signals towards the responsible state institutions and full exploit of all legal opportunities to exercise civic control in the public-political life, Nikolay Kolev has resorted to the so called ‘Tomato Revolution’ – a legitimate form of protest, where the members of parliament were systematically ‘shot’ by tomatoes in order to attract their attention to the consequences of this institutionally supported criminal activity. As a result of the ‘Tomato Revolution’ Bossia has been illegally arrested numerous times and put under measures of repression with the end objective being killing his civic activities. What happened was the opposite – Bossia has taken his battle to the courts and has won categorically barring the right of appeal in all his cases. The corruption mechanism, however, is working in a more and more arrogant manner while his civil protest is being ignored and disparaged by media manipulation and effectively put in ‘information vaccuum’. Having been put in this societal absurdity, Nikolay Kolev has alarmed Deutsche Welle, Süddeutsche Zeitung and Agence France-Presse (AFP) in order to give an opportunity to civil society in Europe in general, to react. The hunger strike is the end phase of his personal opposition against the total violation of the basic human rights and the cynical imitation-based approach in state management.

The signals of warning, first sent by Ivo Krastev, followed by official documents reveal a carefully structured scheme for illegally issuing full driving licenses to people who are unfit to be drivers, i.e. illiterate drivers who do not have the necessary knowledge and skills. This black market for official documents generates some 25 million levs (circa 12.5 million euro) at the expense of some 1300 casualties on the roads of Bulgaria and around 14 000 permanently disabled, every year.

Moreover, these illegally issued documents serve as a threat when it comes to exercising control over migration currently in Europe, the traffic safety on the roads of Europe and the financial security and the insurance market. The endangering persons are mainly people from the gypsy minority, foreign citizens staying only temporary in the country, some of which come from terrorist organisations. The abuse of issuing such ‘documents’ has been confirmed as early as 2011 by the then transport minister Aleksandar Tsvetkov in a television program called ‘Seizmograph’ dated 25.09.2010 when he declared that across the whole country there are around 15 000 illegally issued driving licenses every year. According to official summarised information by the Chief Prosecutor of the Republic of Bulgaria, this corrupt practice is still continuing in 2018 while the price to get a driving license is between 2000 and 4000 leva (circa 1000 and 2000 euro).

In the meantime, a number of arrests have been executed, several investigations have been run, accusations have been raised but there is nobody sentenced, there is no responsibility taken and only covering up of the ‘loyal’ corrupt personnel by allocating them other types of financial streams, appointing them for other public positions or even re-appointing to the same ones. In 2011, the whole management of the institution issuing the driving licences (Executive agency ‘Automobile Administration’ under the Ministry of Transport) was fired. These former executive personnel was subsequently appointed to other responsible public posts. In 2013, the Executive Director of the Automobile Administration agency – Valentin Bozhkov, was arrested along with 12 regional inspectors. On 30.03.2016 the subsequent Executive Director – Tsvetelin Tsvetanov was arrested while the accusations that have been raised still remain unresolved. In the middle of 2017 another 12 officials were arrested with 6 of them having been raised accusations at. From 2014 till 2018 there has been 20 legal procedures and over 30 acts of accusations for officials of the aforementioned Agency which is part of the Ministry of Transport. This of course, is a long-term corruption practice and has significantly larger scope than the powers of the Agency related to:

– receipt of professional competency and driver qualification card, defined by art.14 of Regulation (EEC) No 3821/85 of the Council on 20 December 1985 regarding the control devices for registering the traffic data in road transport (ОВ, L 370/1985 г.);

– covering the requirement for regular training, refresher courses in accordance with art. 10, paragraph 2 of Directive 2003/59/EC of the European Parliament and the Council from 15 July 2003 regarding the initial qualification and continuous training of motorists of some vehicles carrying goods and passengers, for a change to Regulation (EEC) No 3820/85 of the Council and Directive 91/439/EEC of the Council and for the cancellation of Directive 76/914/EEC of the Council (ОВ, L 226/2003) – Directive 2003/59/EC;

– totally discredited procedures for executing test for psychological fitness, the performance of annual vehicle fitness tests, transport of dangerous cargo and the overall traffic control.

All the incongruities mentioned so far and the abuse with the national and European law remain without actual legal consequences – lack of sentences in a justified institutional environment of irresponsibility. The corruption status qui is being encouraged, the national prestige is being ruined and the level of trust in the authorities is going down. The Republic of Bulgaria is currently legitimising potential killers on the roads across the whole of Europe.

Bossia continues the hunger strike for 80 days now in order to protect the life and safety of European and Bulgarian citizens. His demands are:

1. Immediate dissolution of the criminal National Assembly, in which the MPs serve the mafia, and not the sovereign and refuse to exercise parliamentary control over an accused, corrupted minister of transport.

2. Resignation by Ivaylo Moskovski – minister of the Ministry of Transport in which the government-organised corruption practice provides illegal issuing of driving licences (also serving as id documents) on the territory of the European Union.

His cry-out and self-sacrifice are the sign of the sinking of the Bulgarian society and democracy in the captivity of a corrupt, autocratic regime, lacking internal control, incompatible with the European values and standards.


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