Fernando Medina
Fernando Medina has no knowledge of the investigation. His conscience is "absolutely clear and tranquil", he told reporters today. Image: Carlos M. Almeida/ Lusa

Socialists deny irregular party funding

Searches at City Hall appear to have been linked with suspicions of illicit funding  

Portugal’s ruling PS Socialist Party has “categorically” denied having received financial or material support from companies, stressing that donations raised by the party are registered, identified and submitted to the Entity of Accounts and Political Financing.

The position was made public by the leadership of the Socialists in a tweet referring to , “news that has appeared in the media”.

That news is the furore unleashed by searches at Lisbon City Hall on Tuesday.

According to SIC television news today, the investigators suspect a ‘scheme’ that involved “raising money through public works by bribes from construction companies”.

Also highlighted in this purported scheme is Lisbon’s former chief of urbanism, Manuel Salgado (cousin of former BES boss of all this Ricardo Salgado).

But the PS party is adamant that it has not received financial or material support from companies. 

According to the law, only donations from individuals, properly identified, are admitted”, said the party’s tweet.

The party has also said that “donations made are recorded and identified in the official accounts of the party, submitted to the Entity of Accounts and Political Financing”.

“The PS categorically rejects allegations of funding outside the strict legal framework”.

At the same time, Fernando Medina has called a press conference to tell reporters that he has a conscience that is “absolutely clear and tranquil.

“I have asked the Attorney General of the Republic (PGR) to be heard in the investigation that exists to provide all the necessary clarifications. As I have not so far been called to any process, of which I am unaware, I am at the disposal of the Public Prosecutor’s Office (MP) to be heard in the manner and at the time that the Public Prosecutor’s Office sees fit”, he stressed, repeating “several times”, according to SIC, that he has “no knowledge of the investigation”.

natasha.donn@portugalresident.com