Central bank to sue opposition politician over comments on its head

Radek Pietruszka/PAP

Adam Glapiński, the head of the National Bank of Poland (NBP), has said the bank will seek to hold a prominent opposition politician legally liable for comments he made about him.

Tomasz Siemoniak, a deputy leader of Civic Platform (PO), the main opposition party, said that if PO wins the next parliamentary election "strong people will come and take the (NBP - PAP) president out" of the bank.

Glapiński told a press conference on Friday that the legal department of the NBP was preparing "the relevant letters to the relevant judicial authorities to bring Siemoniak to justice."

"A punishable threat and an attack on the independence and sovereignty of the NBP, an attempt to force the NBP to make a decision, are involved," he said.

"I would be afraid if Poland entered such a period in its history when ‘strong people’ take government officials out of institutions they do not like. I hope it will not come to that," he added.

Glapiński also said that the PO leader, Donald Tusk, had "lied" about the legal expertise of the President's Office concerning the next term of office of the NBP head.

Tusk said last week that if PO takes power it will "move Glapiński out of the NBP." He added that experts from the President's Office had indicated "legal obstacles related to the re-election of Glapiński for a second term as the central bank's governor."

Glapiński, who was recently appointed to a second term as the bank’s head, said on Friday that he “had just met" President Andrzej Duda.

"Andrzej Duda explained to me that what Tusk said in Radom is a lie. Donald Tusk is lying. There were no expert opinions in the President's Office regarding the legal possibilities of reappointing me for another term. This is a lie," Glapiński said.

He announced that he would send a letter with the quotes to all central banks and other international institutions related to central banking to "show how some people imagine the situation is developing in Poland."

"Such people should be excluded from public life once and for all," Glapiński said, referring to Tusk.

He added that similar threats of "violent actions" had been made against the president of the Constitutional Tribunal, Julia Przyłębska.

"Poland is not a country where people are forced out of office," Glapiński said.