With its 8 June 2020 ruling the Administrative Regional Court has dealt a serious blow to Ventspils City Council’s troll farm aka the municipality’s official internet portal, opposition deputy ĢirtsValdisKristovskis told regional media Ventspilsnieks.lv about the court’s ruling.
“As it is widely known, for years it was used by the suspended chairman of the city council AivarsLembergs. Now, because of the aforementioned ruling, the city council is obligated to provide even opposition deputy ĢirtsValdisKristovskis (as well as other minority deputies) an equal opportunity to refute the false and misleading information frequently reported by Lembergs’ ‘portal/farm’. This is why it is expected that soon enough Lembergs’ lawlessness will end! From now on he will have to think what to say,” said Kristovskis.
He also told the media that with this court ruling the success of democracy and the rule of law on the path to complete victory is not over. “Likely Ventspils City Council will not give me or other minority deputies this opportunity in spite of the court ruling. Instead they will grab at straws and will try to have the ruling appealed by the Senate even though all three instance rulings, including the Senate’s initial 2018 ruling have been unfavourable for the city council.”
This prediction comes from the city council’s behaviour in trying to appeal the Administrative Regional Court’s ruling of 27 March 2020 in a different case, the deputy told Ventspilnieks.lv. “This ruling orders Ventspils City Council a duty to include minority deputies (not just ones representing For Latvia and Ventspils) in different committees. By complying with this ruling, the city council and municipality would be forced to cease discrimination of Dace Korna, AivisLandmaņis, IvarsLandmanis and ĢirtsValdisKristovskis and stop putting obstacles in their way to fully work in the interest of Ventspils residents.”
Kristovskis also says that «because the city council is not in a hurry to cease these illegal activities, it has decided to appeal Regional Court’s ruling in the Senate, shamelessly insisting on their illegal will. They are trying to, so to speak, stretch the moment to enjoy the fruits of Ventspils totalitarian regime some more».
The opposition deputy does say, however, that court rulings are an unambiguous sign that the day is not that far away when Ventspils City Council’s official troll farm, which has performed countless disinformation campaigns against the Latvian state, opposition and Ventspils residents for years, will be closed down for good. «It would be fair, after all.»
Kristovskis also says “it is possible that sensing accomplishments of these efforts, the criminally accused person AivarsLembergs has launched an especially expansive and aggressive disinformation campaign against the Latvian government and Ventspils Freeport’s operations in the past several weeksAs a reason for this the opposition deputy mentions that “it is clear someone prepares and releases disinformation to secure more political benefits for Lembergs, promote political instability and create damages for Latvia’s society and Ventspils residents”. “Also because newspaper VentasBalss has been involved in the spread of untrue, misleading and distorted information. This is obvious to the naked eye that such an organized, unethical cooperation that is not based around any attempts from the newspaper to ensure publication of objective information, has become a serious threat for the democratic management process and a threat to truth and public benefits.”
“To reduce it, both aforementioned rulings, not just the 8 June 2020 ruling of the Regional Court, should be implemented now, even if Ventspils City Council’s majority and the municipality’s political and administrative management do not like it.”
“Even more. All three court instance levels and their rulings stand on the side of Ventspils minority deputies’ rights. Also because now there is no way for Ventspils City Council’s majority to erase violations committed against minority deputies from court rulings. I believe even Lembergs’ most passionate supporters are forced to admit the time has come for the city council’s management to admit its mistakes,” says Kristovskis.
He added, “Of course, to admit as much, you need at least some sense of responsibility and integrity before society and the state. A response will come in a month if Ventspils City Council has at least a fraction of such properties and awareness. Likely, considering their behaviour until now, they will not comply with Regional Court’s 8 June 2020 ruling and will instead use the last option to appeal it in the Senate. The failure there will be the final defeat for the city council’s and official internet portal’s administrator, the troll Lembergs. It is possible this outcome is the best cure for democracy, which is growing in power in Latvia.”