We, 29.03.2023
Please note that the article is more than five years old and belongs to our archive. We do not update the content of the archives, so it may be necessary to consult newer sources.

Who bought what from Savisaar?

Andres Reimer
, majandusajakirjanik
Who bought what from Savisaar?
Facebook LinkedIn Twitter
Photo: Peeter Langovits

Mayor of Tallinn and Centre Party chairman Edgar Savisaar stands suspected in accepting bribes in four episodes during 2014–2015 wherein entrepreneurs obtained advantages for extending rental contract, building without permit, swapping lots, and winning a procurement.

While Attorney-General Lavly Perling confirmed the names of the seven corruption suspects already appearing in media yesterday, and listed the criminal episodes, she refused to link names of suspects to definite acts.

However, considering the activities of the entrepreneurs, assumptions may be made regarding what they may have «lubricated» the Mayor for.  

Probably, Mr Savisaar provided protection with missing building permit to the entrepreneur Vello Kunman who desired to erect an unbefitting house in the Nõmme district with strong historical traditions.

This February, Estonian TV’s «Eyewitness» uncovered the naughtiness of dividends-millionaire Mr  Kunman’s family demolishing a two-storey house of cultural and environmental value and building one with three floors instead. City officials did nothing but shrug and admit the fact that the new building is two metres higher and corresponds not to project design with valid building permit.

It is not excluded, however, that the quiet family-circle businessman may have sought an advantage with development of some commercial property. Namely, the man sits at the council of the influential commercial property firm Eften Capital.

When it comes to seeking favour with a procurement, building company Rand and Tuulberg’s holder Aivar Tuulberg fits best.

The time slot covered by the suspicion coincides with renovations of Creative Hub in Tallinn where Rand and Tuulberg won procurement for B-section repairs a year ago. A former Creative Hub staff member requesting anonymity told Postimees that before June 2014 the management of the foundation came under pressure to enter into contract with a company in violation of the public procurement conditions. At that, the source desired not to specify the names.

Mr Tuulberg is linked to Astlanda Ehitus also involved in Creative Hub renovations, as well as the building of the municipal housing at Raadiku and Meeliku St. For nearly €9m a year, the city of Tallinn is renting residential buildings for municipal housing from Raadiku Arendus (Development) and Loopealse Arendus, in which Mr Tuulberg has a holding via his companies.

Assuming that each entrepreneur has one specific suspicion episode linked to him, unsubstantiated extension of rental contract might lead us to the hotel and catering businessman Alexander Kofkin whose several services-institutions are located at desirable business area in Tallinn Old Town and about.

Proceeding by that logic, giving bribe to swap lots might be tied to a major international Estonian real estate developer Hillar Teder who recently undertook to briskly develop the area besides Admiralty Basin – the success of which determines the initial impression of Estonia’s capital for tourists arriving via Port of Tallinn.

Mr Teder has his «big business» in Ukraine where he is developing shopping malls real estate. Due to several business disputes, for years he delayed with the development of the lot next to Admiralty Basin, but a couple of years ago the very object became his main thrust in Estonia.  

Even so, it cannot be excluded that the individuals are required to explain participation in several episodes.