Center Party Chairman Edgar Savisaar claimed that he was unaware that the party's former secretary general Priit Toobal had signed letters of guarantee totaling into the hundred of thousands of euros for businessman Paavi Pettai and his company OÜ Midfield, pointing out that the documents were signed during the 2014 election campaign and he had many other things to worry about at the time.
Asked if the Center Party's administration knew enough about the letters of guarantee in due course, Savisaar said that he was not informed enough, but this was due to his being hospitalized for half a year and having other things on his mind in connection with an ongoing criminal investigation regarding him.
"I'm not, however, ruling out that there are people who were aware of them," Savisaar added at Thursday's press conference.
Secretary General Oudekki Loone also said that she had known nothing about the letters of guarantee, adding that she was bewildered by the fact that the former party deputy chairmen and board — referring, among others, to Kadri Simson — had not informed her about them either. "But I guess it slipped their minds during the big election campaign," said Loone.
According to the current party secretary general, none of the former board members were interested in how exactly the election campaign was financed. She stated that her predecessor, ex-secretary general Priit Toobal, had the right to sign letters of guarantee, but in this case their content was illegal.
According to Loone, the party is to declare the letters of guarantee null and void.
"In our estimation, the letters of guarantee are void," said Loone at the Thursday afternoon press coonference. The Center Party, who is to void them, is demaning that Pettai return the original documents to the party.
Editor: Editor: Aili Vahtla