Research findings presentation announcement: How much do we trust the Police?

Institute Alternative (IA) and Regional CSO Network POINTPULSE are organising presentation of results of the public opinion survey „How much do we trust the Police” that will take place on September 1st in PR Centre, starting at 11h.

At the presentation special focus will be dedicated to following issues:

  • How much do we trust the police?
  • How citizens percieve average male and female police officers?
  • How much corruption there is within the police and how to fight it?
  • To what extent politics influences the police?

The perceptions of citizens of Montenegro will be presented and compared to the perceptions in Serbia, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia, and Kosovo.

Research findings will be presented by Milena Milošević, Public Policy Researcher at IA, and the moderator will be Marko Sošić, IA’s Associate.

Presentations on the same topic will be simultaneously organised in Belgrade, Tirana, Sarajevo, Skoplje, and Pristina, where the results will be presented by project partners: Belgrade Center fo Securuty Studies, Institute for Democracy and Mediation, Center for Security Studies, Analytica, and Kosovar Center for Security Studies.

You can also follow the discussion on Twitter using hashtags #BalkanCops and #POINTPULSE.

Project is funded by the European Union through the Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance. The content of the project is the sole responsibility of the POINTPULSE members and the expressed views do not necessarily reflect those of the EU.

MPs or civil servants? Put an end to violation of the law and work in parallel tracks

The news that the MP from the ruling party held a position at the local self-government while simultaneously serving as the Member of the Parliament and that he left the position of the local civil servant with severance pay is an indication of extremely blurred lines between private, party and public services in Montenegro.

According to the Daily Vijesti, Radovan Obradović, MP of the Democratic Party of Socialists (DPS), received severance pay amounting to 15 000 EUR in 2015 after leaving the function of the advisor in the Municipality Bijelo Polje.

Namely, Obradović’s employment relationship in the Municipality had been temporarily suspended allegedly according to the Labour Law which allows for the suspension of employment in the case of election or appointment to a “state function” until the expiration of one term of office.

Application of the law as in the Obradović’s case is controversial due to several reasons.

Primarily, provisions of the Labour Law regulating suspension of employment can not be directly applied to the state and local civil servants.

On the contrary, their rights and labour relations are governed by special laws – the Law on Civil Servants and State Employees and the Law on Local Self-Government, which do not recognise the suspension of employment of servants on the ground of election or appointment to a “state function”.

The logic that applies to employees in the private or non-governmental sector can not be applied to employees in the state administration and local self-governments. The nature of the job and the authorities of public servants place them in a particularly vulnerable position, both in terms of politicisation, as well as from the standpoint of conflict of interest.

The second reason lies in the constitutional division of powers, as well as the very principle of political neutrality of civil servants.

Employees in local and state administration are obliged to refrain from political beliefs, while their expression in the performance of tasks is considered to be a severe violation of official duty.

Obradović’s case, unfortunately, is not alone.

Namely, the case of MP Zoran Jelić gained public attention recently. Simultaneously to performing his parliamentary function, he was hired as a consultant in the Employment Agency of Montenegro where he received an additional salary.

Institute Alternative, therefore, urges relevant authorities, primarily the Agency for Prevention of Corruption and the Administrative Inspection, to take appropriate steps in ending such practices whose actual proportions are unknown.

The narrow interpretation of the Law on Prevention of Corruption which implies that the public officials who perform tasks in state and local administration are the only ones who can not simultaneously be MPs and councillors must not serve as an excuse for the violation of the law and the neglect of separation of powers and the principle of political neutrality.

Public Policy Researcher

IA at the Workshop “Civil Monitoring of Public Procurement” in Tirana

Public Policy Researcher at Institute Alternative (IA), Ana Đurnić, participated at workshop “Civil Monitoring of Public Procurement”, organised by Albanian Institute of Science (AIS) on 29 July in Tirana, with financial suport of National Endowment for Democracy (NED).

Radionica: Civilno društvo i monitoring javnih nabavki, Tirana

Workshop brought together 20 civil society representatives from Albania, Romania, Macedonia, Kosovo, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Montenegro, to exchange knowledge and experience in monitoring of public procurement and jointly contribute to the system of public procurement in these countries to be more transparent.

IA researcher presented Montenegrin public procurement institutional and legislative framework, key research findings of IA’s monitoring of public procurement as well as content and the way of functioning of Montenegrin Public Procurement Portal.


Press Release: Urgently investigate allegations on possible authority abuse by the Police and the Prosecution

Institute alternative (IA) calls for the Supreme State Prosecutor, Minister of Interior and Police Director to urgently clarify whether there is any truth in the allegations on possible cover-up of evidence of the responsibility of a third person that was involved in the car accident that resulted in tragic consequences in Donja Gorica on 29th of July.

Even the slightest doubt that the representativse of the authorities are part of cover-up activities of the case and related evidence is alarming, which is why this issue needs to be put in the spotlight and urgently uncover all the details of the circumstances of the case.

If the slightest part of the allegations are true, we expect the Police Officers and the State Prosecutor in charge to be put under investigation as soon as possible. The State Prosecution and the Police Administration must show determination to sanction each illegal and unprofessional doing, particularly when it comes to cases of such magnitude. If that is not done, this case will motivate the rest of the authority to continue with similar “interventions“ that do irreversible damage to justice, right and trust of citizens in institutions.

It is up to the chiefs of Prosecution and internal control of the Police to investigatie as soon as possible and provide an answer whether there were illegalities taking place, as at this very moment there is a justified doubt, and it is up to the public not to allow this case to be forgotten.

The background of the case is accessible on Vijesti portal