United Russia Nizhny Novgorod branch head steps down following drunk driving scandal

United Russia Nizhny Novgorod branch head steps down following drunk driving scandal
Vadim Bulavinov

The official reason for the resignation of Vadim Bulavinov became health problems. He stated that he was hospitalized with a heart attack.

The Head of the Nizhny Novgorod branch of United Russia party, former Mayor of Nizhny Novgorod and State Duma deputy Vadim Bulavinov resigned in connection with health problems, Gazeta.ru reports. Bulavinov will be released from office at the next meeting of the Presidium of the General Council.

Shortly before the deputy’s stepping down, local media reported that he was detained by traffic police for driving in a state of strong alcoholic intoxication along the quay of Grebnoy Canal in Nizhny Novgorod. According to NTA-Privolzhy e, Bulavinov was taken in city hospital №33 for medical examination. The source of the publication in the State Traffic Safety Inspectorate said that any person can be detained for drunk driving, regardless of his status and deputy immunity.

Assistant deputy Petr Buyanov refuted this information. According to him, Bulavinov suffered a heart attack. He was taken to the hospital in a pre-stroke condition. Buyanov also added that two examinations were conducted, which revealed that no drugs or alcohol was found in the blood of the deputy. The assistant to Bulavinov, however, did not explain why the deputy's blood was checked for alcohol if he was taken to the hospital with a heart attack.

The interim Governor of the Nizhny Novgorod region, Gleb Nikitin, said that there was a check being conducted in relation to Bulavinov. He noted that the deputy could indeed drive the car in a state of intoxication. If this information is confirmed, he will be held responsible regardless of his position. Nikitin also thanked health workers and traffic police officers for their work "at the highest level, regardless of ranks and titles."

United Russia party is also waiting for the results of the check against Bulavinov, said acting Secretary of the General Council of the party Andrey Turchak. He recalled that "neither a party post, nor a party ticket do not exempt from liability."

The plenipotentiary of the President of the Russian Federation in the Privolzhsky Federal District, Mikhail Babich, claimed that the United Russia had a rule on automatic suspension of party membership of those detained for drunk driving, as this is a "degree of increased social danger". According to Babich, the verification against Bulavinov is still ongoing.

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