The President of Armenia, Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Hayastan All-Armenian Fund Armen Sarkissian has addressed an official letter to the members of the Board of Trustees of the Fund.
During the difficult days of the war, most of the funds raised by the Hayastan All-Armenian Fund, 52,703,113,395 AMD, were donated to a separate treasury account of the Government of the Republic of Armenia at the request of the Government to finance infrastructure, social and health expenditures.
From the beginning, President Sarkissian has been of the opinion that the money transferred to the government should be converted into a debt through a loan. However, in the current difficult situation, the majority of the members of the Fund’s Board of Trustees made a different decision.
Taking into account the growing public interest in the issue, President Sarkissian addressed a letter to the director of the foundation Haykak Arshamyan on November 26 with a request to provide clarifications.
“As Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Hayastan All-Armenian Fund, I am deeply concerned that due to the transfer of the money donated to the fund by our compatriots and friends to the government, there has been some distrust and dissatisfaction with the fund’s activities. Our compatriots have raised the issue in the press, as well. This fact has also become a source of speculation, donors have suspicions that their trust might have been abused. As a result, the reputation of the Hayastan All-Armenian Fund, as well as fundraising and donations for future programs, may be jeopardized,” the President said.
The President of the Republic stressed that the current situation requires urgent steps to be taken so that the trust in the government and the foundation is not completely lost. In addition, there is a danger of discrediting the idea of pan-Armenian unity in general, an idea that has so far ensured the fund’s activities.
Therefore, according to the President, the government should submit a clear, detailed, transparent report on the expenditures made with the funds transferred by the fund, and this should be done as publicly as possible.
At the same time, an urgent international audit should be conducted to provide the public, especially our Diaspora compatriots, as the main and loyal donors of the foundation, with comprehensive information on the funds raised by the Hayastan All-Armenian Fund and their targeted management.
In case of a negative conclusion of the international audit or if the results of the audit are not satisfactory to the trustees or donors, the amount of AMD 52,703,113,395 transferred to the government should be restated as a loan, subject to subsequent return to the Hayastan All-Armenian Fund.
“Aware of the existing difficult situation of the country, I still consider it unacceptable to add to the various crises the crisis of confidence around the Hayastan All-Armenian Fund,” the President said.
He added that he return of the funds transferred to the government to the Hayastan All-Armenian Fund can change the situation and become a guarantee of restoring trust in the fund.
“The refund to the fund’s budget will allow the Board of Trustees to decide on spending directions themselves, taking into account the views and suggestions of the trustees, donors, and, if necessary, cooperating with the Artsakh leadership and the Government of the Republic of Armenia,” said President Sarkissian, anticipating the opinion of the members of the Board of Trustees of the Hayastan All-Armenian Fund on the issue.
The President believes the fund must be an absolutely apolitical structure, free from even the slightest doubts.