TRC CHAIRMAN ALEXANDROV AGAIN DISMISSED BY GOVERNMENT
The Chairman of the Telecommunications Regulation Commission (TRC) Georgi Alexandrov has been dismissed by the Council of Ministers for a second time. The Cabinet made its decision on August 11 without the presence of all the ministers, and the motive for sacking Mr. Alexandorov this time was that in his capacity of TRC Chairman he had refused to investigate reliability under the Protection of Classified Information Act, without filling in the necessary questionnaire and not demanding a permit for access, in force since the law entered into effect till May 13, 2004. On that date Mr. Alexandrov was sacked for the first time, but with completely different motives - poor organization of TRC's work. Gergana Surbova, till then Chief Secretary of the Ministry of Transport and Telecommunications, was appointed to replace him. A lawsuit was after that initiated at the Supreme Administrative Court and its two instances (a 3-member and a 5-member team) ruled his dismissal was illegal. The 5-member team extended his ruling on August 9, but Mr. Alexandrov was restored to his post for just two days. Meanwhile, UDF-Bourgas accused the Minister of Transport and Telecommunications Nikolay Vassilev that with his intercession the Bulgarian Telecommunications Company (BTC) intends to give the sack to 300 of the telecom's employees in the seaside town. The reason is the strategy of BTC's new owner Viva Ventures, intending to close down the Bourgas branch. The privatized company announced officially that the ideas for its restructuring were aimed to reduce its current 11 local divisions into four. The new division will become a fact only after the end of 2005 and is not necessarily connected with personnel lay-offs, BTC insiders explained.