Alfredo Casimiro blames pandemic and lack of state support for the situation of Groundforce – ZAP

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António Cotrim / Lusa

Groundforce workers concentrated with the Ministry of Infrastructure, in Lisbon.

The chairman of the board of directors of Groundforce and director of Pasogal, Alfredo Casimiro, today accused the Government of being guilty of the company’s situation, due to the lack of support to face the effects of the pandemic.

“I am not to blame, it is not private management. And the pandemic it’s at lack of support promised by the State ”, affirmed Alfredo Casimiro, before the deputies of the parliamentary committee on Economy, Innovation, Public Works and Housing.

The administrator and majority shareholder of Groundforce, with 50.1% of its share capital, underlined that the State, “in the face of the global pandemic crisis, failed to provide the promised and widely publicized support, such as the so-called covid support lines”.

Alfredo Casimiro stated that they have been circulating in the last days “Lies” about you and regarding your participation in the handling, the first falsehood being the idea that “he transferred the 50.1% of Groundforce from Urbanos to Pasogal”.

“It’s a lie, the shares were, from the beginning, that is, in July 2012, purchased by Pasogal, which was set up at that time for that purpose. Urbanos, which was the company that I had, and I have, intervened given the Government’s urgency to have contracts closed to show Brussels at the end of 2011, but it was very clear to TAP SGPS and the Competition Authority that the actions would be bought by a new company that I was setting up ”, said the administrator.

Alfredo Casimiro also said that lie that promised to guarantee a pledge of shares, which he could not fulfill, since, he added, “an asset, even if pledged or mortgaged, can be pledged multiple times, all depending on its value” and also because “the asset to be pledged, at the date when this was to be constituted, it would be in the conditions required by the Government and by TAP, SA ”.

The administrator also guaranteed that “there is not a cent” that went from Groundforce or Pasogal to Malta, as it has been for the workers in the demonstrations of the last days.

According to the information he provided to the deputies, the pandemic had a negative impact of 90 million euros in Groundforce’s turnover.

“The only support we had from the state was the ‘lay-off'”, accused Alfredo Casimiro, saying that they made a request for help to the Government in a timely manner, “but help, until today, has never arrived”.

“It is not clear why so many covid support lines were announced and why our process was stopped at the Ministries of Finance and Economy, leaving Groundforce to the point of not having the money to pay salaries”, concluded Alfredo Casimiro.

Agreement is “short-term solution” and “structural solution is needed”

The chairman of the Board of Directors of TAP, Miguel Frasquilho, said today that the agreement principle reached today with Groundforce is a “Short-term solution” and there is still a need to design a “structural solution”.

“Confirming tomorrow [sexta-feira] the agreement principle that was reached today, we will be able to resolve the situation that Groundforce and its workers are experiencing in the very short term ”, explained Miguel Frasquilho to the deputies of the parliamentary committee on Economy, Innovation, Public Works and Housing.

“This is not a structural solution, this is a short-term solution ”, underlined the official, pointing out that it is necessary that in the coming weeks or months, the actors in the negotiations continue to work“ so that a structural solution can be designed ”.