Good afternoon on Thursday! Today former Prime Minister and GERB leader Boyko Borissov fell in the crossfire between several opponents. Caretaker Healthcare Minister Stoycho Katsarov notified the Prosecution that Mr Borissov had spread false information about the health authorities administering vaccine shots past their expiration date, which amounted to a public hazard. Then, ex-caretaker Economy Minister Assen Vassilev invited Mr Borissov to a debate over corruption and misappropriation of public funds after the former prime minister had blamed Mr Vassilev for exaggerating these problems. In other news:
Schools will not reopen for 1-4 graders until 8 November at the earliest
According to caretaker Education Minister Nikolay Denkov, there is no way for the authorities to set a date for the return of the youngest pupils until they establish a system of in-person attendance and find companies that are able to deliver the Covid tests required to screen pupils regularly. "We are trying to reenter schools next week, but it is highly unlikely that we will be able to set up all the processes before 8 November - that is the deadline, if, that is, we don't enter full lockdown by then," Mr Denkov told bTV.
36% of children, 50% of over-65s in Bulgaria at risk of poverty: Eurostat
Bulgaria comes second in the EU in terms of children aged 18 or less, or adults over 65 years who live in risk of poverty or social exclusion, the European Statistics Service (Eurostat) said. According to the EU agency, 36.2 percent of Bulgarian children live at risk of poverty compared to 24.2 percent for the EU as a whole. Only Romania has a higher proportion - 41.5 percent. However, when it comes to elderly people over the age of 65, Sofia reports a higher rate of 49.5 percent of people living near the poverty line, compared to 43.7 for Romania. Overall, Romania "leads" the ranking because of the higher levels of working poor compared to Bulgaria.
Prosecution to decide if it will investigate Kiril Petkov's citizenship after vote
The Specialized Prosecution announced it will decide whether to open an investigation over the allegedly falsified declaration signed by ex-caretaker minister and We Continue the Change co-chair Kiril Petkov after the 14 November vote, "Sega" newspaper wrote on Thursday. Mr Petkov's appointment to the position of caretaker Economy Minister was declared unconstitutional by the Constitutional court on Wednesday. The court ruled that his declaration to abandon his second Canadian citizenship was insufficient to prove he was not a dual citizen at the time of his appointment, which paves the way for the Prosecution to investigate whether he signed a potentially false declaration that he was eligible to be a minister.