Mateusz Kijowski (left) with Martin Schulz – President of the European Parliament
According to largest Polish news portal Onet.pl, Mateusz Kijowski, 49-year old leader of KOD (Democracy Defense Commitee), political NGO established as a civic opposition to ruling party PiS, and its leader – Jarosław Kaczyński, has transfered money from KOD to his company. Onet revealed invoices issued by his company MKM Studio and paid by a KOD for a total of 91 143 PLN (about 21 000 euro) for internet domain registration, hosting and “data migration”.
This money came from fundraising effort and was donated by KOD supporters. Kijowski never stated that money collected by KOD are fuelling his company and members and supporters now feel angry and cheated. Moreover, just several weeks ago, on a public meeting in Słupsk, when asked what are his income sources, he said that KOD isn’t paying him anything, he doesn’t do anything for a living and his wife is supporting him financially. This has proven to be a lie and it is a great setback for Democracy Defense Committee which was intended to be public and transparent organization, fighting for Democracy in Poland. Additionaly, Kijowski has did not paid alimonies for his previous marriage, and he still owns his former wife about 90 000 PLN, which he did not pay.
KOD rallies attracted thousands of protesters in various cities against current government in recent months, but now its legitimacy is dubious.
In a statement issued on Facebook, Kijowski stated that this invoices are real, but he hasn’t done anything illegal and this matter is political attack on his person and organization. This stunt spells an end to bright but brief political career of Mateusz Kijowski and KOD. Next board elections in this organization are to be hold in March 2017, however no matter who will be chosen as the next leader, trust in Democracy Defence Committee was undermined permanently.