MINSK, July 17. /TASS/. The Central Election Commission (CEC) of Belarus had all grounds to deny registration as presidential candidate to Viktor Babariko, because of his role in several criminal cases currently being investigated, CEC Chair Lidiya Yermoshina has said.
"Assumtions that the above-mentioned individual [Babariko] is innocent until provent guilty are not justified, because the benefit of the doubt is applicable only in the criminal law. As far as the electoral legislation is concerned, information that the declaration is non-credible, received from other sources, irrespective of the launch of the criminal case, can become reasons and grounds for registration denial," she said in a video address, posted on the CEC website on Thursday.
She said that Babariko has the status of a person of interest in several criminal cases launched into corruption-related crimes.
"The financial investigations department of the State Control Committee of the Republic of Belarus has provided information that this applicant failed to provide information about foreign firms that he had founded abroad, about real estate that he had purchased there, about money he received as bribes in 2019," she said.
The presidential election in Belarus is scheduled for August 9. The Central Election Commission registered five presidential candidates, including incumbent Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko, while two candidates - Valery Tsepkalo and Viktor Babariko - were denied registration.