By ABIODUN OLULEYE, Slovakia
Slovak Culture Minister Marek Madaric, a long-time senior member of Prime Minister Robert Fico’s Smer party, on Wednesday resigned following the murder of an investigative reporter that has shocked the country.
Separately, two Slovak officials named in the last report of journalist Jan Kuciak, who specialised in exposing fraud and cronyism, said in a statement that they had resigned pending the outcome of the investigation into his murder.
The two – national security council secretary Viliam Jasan and Maria Troskova, an aide to Prime Minister Robert Fico – denied having anything to do with the killing.
Kuciak’s last report alleged that the two had links with an Italian businessman before they entered government.
However, his report did not suggest any wrongdoing by either of them.
Their announced resignation followed calls from Justice Minister Lucia Zitnanska and opposition leaders for their dismissal.
Kuciak, 27, reported on suspected crimes by businessmen, some of whom had connections with Slovak politicians.
He and his girlfriend were found shot dead at the weekend, and police said the killings were likely over his work.
“Plainly said, I cannot as culture minister put up with a journalist being murdered during my tenure,’’ Madaric, the culture minister, told a televised news conference in the capital Bratislava. (Reuters/NAN)