Seimas speaker plans parliamentary panel for MP's sexual misconduct allegations

Viktoras Pranckietis

Lithuania's Parliamentary Speaker Viktoras Pranckietis has pledged to form an ad hoc commission at the parliament to scrutinize the sexual misconduct allegations against MP Mykolas Majauskas.

"There can be no dual standards, we just recently had the case with (former MP Kęstutis) Pūkas, it ended. Unfortunately, new ones emerge. We spoke about the spring session and the need to limit the actions to avoid so many commissions. In this case, we will still have to have it," the parliamentary speaker told Žinių Radijas news radio on Wednesday morning when asked about the ad hoc commission for the Majauskas' case.

Pranckietis noted that Majauskas needed a right to defense and a position. The parliamentary speaker said the conservative MP who has suspended his party membership and pledged to resign as chairman of the parliamentary Commission for Prevention of Suicides and Violence had already done what a politician was expected under the circumstances. Nevertheless, he should also think about giving up his mandate, said Pranckietis.

In an interview to Info TV television on Tuesday, a young female accused Majauskas of unwanted sexual conduct in his apartment when she was an adult high school student more than five years ago. The woman said she was aware of at least a few more women allegedly subjected to sexual misconduct by Majauskas.

Majauskas issued a press release on Tuesday afternoon, announcing suspended membership in the conservative Homeland Union – Lithuanian Christian Democrats "until all doubts are dispelled." He also plans to resign from the top position at the parliamentary Commission for Prevention of Suicides and Violence, however, does not yet plan to give up his mandate.

Majauskas is already the 2nd MP of the 2016-2020 parliament charged with sexual misconduct after Kestutis Pūkas was ousted by way of impeachment in January. Investigation of sexual harassment allegations against him should be completed later this week.

As part of the #metoo wave on social networks where women admit having been subjected to sexual harassment or abuse, accusations in Lithuania have been brought against the head of the Panevėžys Juozo Miltinio Theatre Linas Marijus Zaikauskas, film director Šarūnas Bartas, theater director Jonas Vaitkus and former academic staff of the Vilnius Academy of Art, Jonas Gasiūnas, Arvydas Liepuonius and Gintautas Trimakas.

Source: BNS
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