The minister says that currently he has the prime minister’s backing both regarding his family’s farming in the Klaipėda district and the ministry’s plans to spend millions of euros on publicity.
“The prime minister has confidence in me. If the prime minister says that I have a problem, then I will step down on the first day,” Markauskas told reporters on Monday.
Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis said last week that explanations given by Markauskas were sufficient to him and that it was up to the minister to assess his family matters and family relations.
The 15min.lt news website reported last week that Markauskas’ mother, Sofija Markauskienė, had been using several plots of land in the Klaipėda district without the landowners’ permission for five to six years and that she had been receiving payments from the National Paying Agency for that land.
15min.lt also reported on Monday that the Agriculture Ministry was planning to spend around 6 million euros on publicity within the next few years.
President Dalia Grybauskaitė said on Monday that “the shadows of abuse” falling on the minister and his family “damage not only his reputation, but also the reputation of the government as a whole”.