Corruption in Kosovo is not being fought

Corruption in Kosovo is not being fought

IBNA Special Report

Pristina, August 4, 2014/Independent Balkan News Agency

By Elton Tota

Corruption continues to be present in all the institutions of the Republic of Kosovo.

Based on a study carried out by SPEAK movement, institutions in Kosovo, government, parliament, prosecution, courts and police, have failed in fighting this negative phenomenon.

Fidan Kalaja, of SPEAK, says during the presentation of the study, that in 15 parliamentary sessions, corruption was discussed only in one occasion.

“Until it dissolved in May, parliament of Kosovo has held 15 plenary session, where it has only discussed about corruption in one occasion, namely, on the law relating to the declaration of assets. Meanwhile, out of 169 decisions taken from January to June of this year, only one decision relates to the fight against corruption”, declared Kraja.

SPEAK has also published the data for the six month period on the work of Police, Prosecution and Courts, in the framework of the Anti-Corruption Platform of Statistics.

The findings of the SPEAK study indicate that 1800 cases have remained unsolved by the Prosecution and Court of Kosovo for the first half of this year.

As far as courts are concerned, the study says that Courts of Kosovo have dealt with 97 cases for accepting bribery, with 171 suspects. 20 people have been declared guilty, while 77 cases have been suspended.

As far as offering bribery is concerned, Courts of Kosovo has dealt with 87 suspects, where 4 of them have been declared guilty, while 44 cases of have been suspended.

As far as abuse with office is concerned, Courts of Kosovo have tried 619 people, where 93 people have been declared guilty, while 573 cases have been suspended.

As far as police of Kosovo is concerned, SPEAK study says that police has dealt in total with 19 cases of accepting bribery, where it has pressed charges and arrested six people.

For the offense of offering bribery, police of Kosovo has dealt with 30 cases, where 10 people have been indicted, six people have been arrested.

Meanwhile, for abuse with office, Police of Kosovo have dealt with 236 cases of corruption and out of these, 106 people have been indicted and 34 people have been arrested.

Fidan Kalaja says that compared to the study carried out last year by SPEAK movement, the figures have not changed.

He says that performance of the institutions of justice toward corruption has remained almost the same.

“There isn’t much difference from the first half of last year in terms of the fight against corruption. Statistics are the same. The number of unresolved cases is the same. Low performance by these institutions remains the same as last year. There’s not a major difference in this context”, says Kalaja.

According to analysts and different officials, corruption in Kosovo remains a challenge and is considered as the biggest threat of the prosperity of Kosovo.

Prominent Kosovar analyst, Vilhard Shala told IBNA that in Kosovo, there’s a lacking political will by the government which is responsible for preventing and fighting corruption.

“Kosovo is lacking the state mechanisms for the fight against corruption. Although there’s an anti corruption legislation and anti-corruption commission, in practice, it has not been supported by the government. Recently, the president’s office founded the National Committee for the Fight Against Corruption, but no result has been produced so far in this aspect”, says Shala.

According to him, Prosecution must insist more on prosecuting in case there are sufficient proofs. /ibna/