Hanna Gronkiewicz-Waltz

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Person.png Hanna Gronkiewicz-Waltz  Rdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
(lawyer, politician)
Hanna Gronkiewicz-Waltz (2014).JPG
Born4 November 1952
Alma materUniversity of Warsaw
ReligionRoman Catholic
SpouseAndrzej Waltz
Member ofWEF/Global Leaders for Tomorrow/1994
WEF/Global Leader for Tomorrow 1994. President of the National Bank of Poland 1992-2001. As Mayor of Warsaw 206-2018, accused of being the main culprit in huge enrichment scheme.

Employment.png Mayor of Warsaw

In office
2 December 2006 - 22 November 2018

Employment.png President of the National Bank of Poland

In office
5 March 1992 - 10 January 2001

Hanna Beata Gronkiewicz-Waltz is a Polish politician and lawyer who was President of the National Bank of Poland 1992-2001 and mayor of Warsaw between 2006 and 2018.

She was selected a Global Leaders for Tomorrow by the World Economic Forum in 1994. As candidate in the 1995 presidential election, she obtained only 2.76% of the votes in the first round of voting.

Life and career

Between 1992 and 2000, she was the chairman of the National Bank of Poland, the central bank of Poland. She resigned to take the position of the deputy chairman of European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, a position she held between 2001 and 2004.

Gronkiewicz-Waltz was elected to the Sejm on 25 September 2005 after receiving 137,280 votes in the 19th Warsaw district, running on the Civic Platform list.

In the 2006 municipal elections, Gronkiewicz-Waltz served as Civic Platform's nominee for mayor of Warsaw. On 12 November she gained 34.23%, finishing next to Law and Justice candidate, former prime minister Kazimierz Marcinkiewicz. As neither received 50 percent of the vote, a second round election was held on 26 November, where Gronkiewicz-Waltz received 53.18% of the votes, winning the election.

Regarding the Equality Parade for LGBT rights in the capital, Gronkiewicz-Waltz has taken the opposite stand to her predecessor, approving it. Though equality marches have been officially allowed in the past, they had always met with strong resistance during the term of Lech Kaczyński as Mayor of Warsaw, particularly from the All-Polish Youth movement. Gronkiewicz-Waltz said the parade would pose no threat to morals and pointed to the Bączkowski v Poland ruling by the European Court of Human Rights that Kaczyński had acted illegally and discriminatory in banning the 2005 Equality Parade. [1]

In the November 2010 municipal elections, Gronkiewicz-Waltz was re-elected as the mayor (or "president") of Warsaw, winning 53.67% of the votes outright in the first round, making a second round unnecessary.

Hanna Gronkiewicz-Waltz was along with Monika Olejnik, an influential journalist, a murder target of Brunon K., who was arrested in November 2012 in connection with the preparation of a terrorist attack on Sejm.[2]

Reprivatisation fraud in Warsaw

The reprivatisation fraud in Warsaw happened on a massive scale during the reprivatisation in Warsaw, which was performed after the fall of the Communist Poland to reverse the post-World War II nationalisation of the land in the city.[3][4]

Hanna Gronkiewicz-Waltz was Mayor of Warsaw from 2006 to 2018. Until the reprivatization scandal became known, she was popular and was considered a successful mayor.

Most of the controversial reprivatizations took place during her tenure - for which she was held responsible by many media and the public. It could not be proven that she was directly involved in the town hall's decisions in question or that she was personally enriched by her practice. However, the mayor was accused of not having questioned the privatization practice of her employees, despite many indications that the decisions were dubious[5]. It was only after a article was published in Gazeta Wyborcza that she fired employees; At the same time, she also resigned from the presidency of the Platforma Obywatelska in Warsaw in order to be able to devote herself more to the subject of reprivatization, according to her own statement. However, her repeated refusals to testify before the appropriate commission of inquiry and public statements slowed down the investigation of the scandal.

The committee of inquiry accused Gronkiewicz-Waltz of being the main culprit in the illegal reprivatization practice.[6] Only after long downplaying the issue did she admit that there was a group of corrupt employees at City Hall who had stolen valuable real estate from various businessmen.[7] She stated that this group had been working behind her back for years.[8] She cited the lack of a law to resolve property issues as the cause of the problem[9]. In October 2017 she appointed blame:

“There was a group of criminals at work. It reached well beyond the city government employees, whom I have since fired. Judges and lawyers were involved. Prosecutors need to determine how far this group's connections reached.”[10]

In addition to her reluctance to respond to the affair, she was hurt by the news of the return of a building to her husband's family. The property had belonged to a Jewish family until the war. This reprivatization was subsequently declared illegal; In 2017, the mayor's husband and daughter had to pay back profits from the sale of the property to the city treasury.

Gronkiewicz-Waltz is a Fellow of Collegium Invisibile as a professor of economics.[11]

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