Center Party to pay ex-leader salary without withholding money paid to Tallinn

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Photo: Erik Prozes

Estonia's Center Party has decided to pay a salary to its former chairman Edgar Savisaar but will not withhold any sums to compensate for the 117,000 euros of forbidden donation the party paid for Savisaar to the City of Tallinn on the orders of the Supervisory Committee on Party Financing (ERJK).

"It seems to me that we will just pay it and that is it," secretary general of the party Jaak Aab told BNS on Wednesday, adding that the party board has decided that Savisaar will not be asked to pay the money back.

According to Aab the party is paying Savisaar a salary as of this Monday as he is the party's advisor now. Aab told the public broadcaster ERR that Savisaar is the party's history advisor.

Aab said that the monthly salary Savisaar is being paid is less than the 3,500 euros previously announced as the party has paid his legal fees.

Last week Aab told BNS that the party had not yet made a decision regarding Savisaar's salary and the sum to be withhold from his salary in connection with the payment of 117,000 euros.

The party financing supervision committee in January 2015 ordered Savisaar, then mayor of Tallinn and chairman of the Center Party, to pay the city back over 116,000 euros spent on election ads ahead of the 2013 local polls, eliminate deficiencies in the party's report on the financing of the 2013 campaign and provide proof of these requirements having been met.

Savisaar contested the precept in a court of law. The Supreme Court's refusal on Nov. 10 last year to handle the former party leader's appeal meant that the precept became final.