Following the publication of an article in the press about the President of the Regional Government of Madeira, Miguel Albuquerque categorically stated that he leads a “completely clean and transparent life” with regards to his private business affairs and said that his candidacy for the Presidency of the Republic is a hypothesis, saying “what I can say, at this moment, is that I have been contacted on this matter and that I do not rule out that hypothesis.”
The President stressed that a news article in the ‘Sábado’ Magazine included a report that the Public Ministry and the Judiciary Police are investigating him as “in connection with a corruption case” was “nothing unusual.”
According to Sábado, the President is being investigated for corruption in connection with private real estate deals and for the direct adjustment of the concession to private individuals in the Free Zone. Commenting on this, he said “I don’t think this is anything strange. It never happens by chance because as soon as a rumour began to circulate that I was running for Presidency of the Republic, this kind of ‘innuendo and defamation’ was published immediately. “
The social-democratic ruler remains open to the possibility of proceeding with his candidacy for Belém, stressing that, if this happens, he will continue to lead the Regional Government and the PSD / Madeira. “What I want to say is that, nobody intimidates me, I am not afraid of anything and where these [private business] matters are concerned, I have a led a completely clean and transparent life.”
Two incidences were quoted by the magazine. Firstly, work awarded to the Madeira Development Society (SDM) for the development of the International Business Centre of Madeira (IBC) and the creation and maintenance of structures in the Industrial Free Zone in March 2017 were awarded without going out to tender. Secondly, Miguel Albuquerque, Machado de Albuquerque, Lda, and Andrade de Albuquerque, Lda, sold the Quinta do Arco tourist developments to CA Património Crescente, managed by Square Asset Management.
Responding to this, Miguel Albuquerque said that he had not been notified of the magazine contents and stressed, that the relationship between the Regional Government and the International Business Centre of Madeira (IBC) has existed for 40 years. He went on to say that although public procurement law can be questioned, its legal basis cannot, as it is based on “the opinions of eminent lawyers.” He concluded by saying that the transactions are public knowledge, and the deeds can be inspected by anyone. The whole process was transparent and the initial transactions were made in advance of him becoming President of the Regional Government in April 2015.
info at madeira-weekly.com