A new audio recording has emerged online of a meeting held at a SAS Group office in the days leading to the April 2 parliamentary elections, in which over 200 employees are being “urged,” “asked” and threatened to “collect votes” for SAS Group owner, Republican Party MP Artak Sargsyan.
“Finding a job in our reality and in this country’s economic state, proving a person with a job is actually a huge deal… We all work for SAS Group, and all of us are more or less enjoying its benefits,” the speaker, presumably one of the SAS managers, is heard saying in the recording published on Hayastan24.com.
“SAS Group has to have an active part in the elections […] because we come to you with such a request once every five years,” he continues, promising a trip to Paris to the “best employees.”
He then makes remarks about the lists of potential voters drawn up by SAS employees, asking those gathered to applaud the people who have collected the most names, and shaming others for “bringing in zero votes.”
The following are excerpts from the manager’s speech:
– [SAS Sweet] has 200 employees, but you’ve only brought in 53 votes. If the situation does not change within the next 3 days, we will have to say goodbye to you. This is a matter of respect; if this is how you treat us, we’ll treat you 5 times worse.
– Shame on you, Garik! This zero is not becoming of you!
– Who can guess how many votes Irina has brought in? Forty-four votes! We are going to give Irina a promotion, you have my word. If you continue to do well during the elections, you’ll go to Paris. And when you return, your new position will be waiting for you.
– Davit A. Twenty-two votes – well done! There are 2 Davits: one has brought in 0 votes, the other – 22 votes! This here is the real Davit!
– Edgar P. Shame on you, Edgar.
– Narine, who lives in a village, has brought in 15 votes, 50% of which are guaranteed votes.
– Samson, you should work on increasing your number… You still have time.
– Siranuysh, you’ve had your hair done and come here all dressed up as though we were gathering to honor you for the zero votes you’ve brought in. Aren’t you ashamed of yourself, Siranuysh?
– This person has brought in 70 votes! This is the best number yet! Let’s end today’s meeting on this positive note. We’ll gather again in 3-4 days to see how everyone is doing.