The vitamins' packages, President Aleksandar Vucic announced for Serbia's pensioners to help them build the immune system amid the coronavirus epidemic, cost 9.4 million Euro and was agreed without a public call, the Nova Ekonomija (New Economy) magazine wrote on Monday.
On Sunday, Vucic showed a bag with vitamins D3, C and Zinc mineral, „important for strengthening organisms and immunity.“
On Monday, the magazine said that the bags were bought in an urgent procedure through negotiations without a public call.
The Health Ministry invited five companies and then chose one instead of announcing a public call to which all interested firms could have answered.
Nova Ekonomija added that the Hungarian Goodwill company owns most stakes in its company in the northern city of Subotica. Zoltan Tamash, who became known after Vucic said he received „a beautiful New Years’ gift from my a good acquaintance Zoltan Tamash…“ is said to own 29 percent of the shares.
A year ago, in November 2019, Vucic posted a photo of his visit to the company, accompanied by the Vojvodina province’ President Istvan Pastor.
Later on Monday, Prime Minister Ana Brnabic defended the choice, saying the claims about a conflict of interest were „lunatic“ and „crazy.“
„We do not have many vitamin producers in Serbia, and I can hardly imagine that if that was procured from any of them, you would not find a conflict of interest. Serbia is a small country; everyone knows everyone. When you start to draw side links, everyone can be linked to everyone,“ Brnabic said.