The Committee endorses Jelić and hides the documentation of candidates
After almost seven years of waiting for the appointment of the missing member of the State Audit Institution’s (SAI) Senate, MPs in the Committee for Economy, Finance and Budget have unanimously and without representatives of the opposition, appointed Zoran Jelić for this position.
Institute Alternative has recently appealed to Committee members to disqualify Jelić’s application on several grounds. Recently, we sent a documentation package to the MPs, a necessary reading sent to the MPs documentation that would have been helpful for the Committee members in making proper decision:
- Transcript of Jelic’s statement on the abuse of the Employment Agency of Montenegro’s programmes for the purchase of votes (the Recording Affair);
- SAI’s Audit Report on the Employment Agency of Montenegro, in which SAI gave an adverse (negative) opinion on Zoran Jelić’s management of the institution;
- Documentation proving that Jelić has been breaking the law for years, by being at the same time an MP and a civil servant, with full payment (and variables) in the Parliament and the Employment Agency of Montenegro.
Institut Alternativa has requested copies of the received applications from the Parliament, with all the evidence and documentation provided by the candidates. We believe that it is necessary that the procedures for appointment carried out by the Parliament, especially when it comes to permanent positions, to be fully transparent and that the public must be allowed to access all documents necessary for the application of candidates. However, the Parliament has turned to harmfulness test of disclosure of information and refused access to information, arguing that its release “could cause harmful consequences for the work and decision making of the Committee of Economy, Finance and Budget, which are of greater importance than the interests of the public to know.”
The ruling coalition has not made the slightest effort to propose a candidate who would be acceptable to the professional public and without integrity issues, perceived or proven. After they have occupied the Committee, which is traditionally chaired by the opposition (since its key purpose is the control and supervision of the public administration), the ruling coalition has clearly shown us how much it cares for having a strong and powerful SAI.
We see such a decision of the ruling coalition as an intention to stop the reform work of SAI and further reduce its capacity to objectively and independently examine potential abuses, illegalities and other issues in the work of public administration.
Appointment of Zoran Jelić to the Senate of SAI is an attack on the independence and integrity of the supreme audit institution whose task is to protect the budget from exactly those abuses that Jelić has been perpetrating for years.
President of the Managing Board