ISPE demands from state leaders in Kosovo to take action against those that did not accredit their programs

ISPE demands from state leaders in Kosovo to take action against those that did not accredit their programs

The management of the ISPE College through an open letter to the President, the Speaker, and the Prime Minister of Kosovo, demanded to correct the decision of the Accreditation Agency of Kosovo, which did not accredited the programs of the ISPE College.

The letter with the signature of the director Bajram Ibraj, mentions according to them the arguments, with which they claim that there was violated the law and it was an act of injustice.

The management of the ISPE College demands from the Prime Minister to take actions against the Minister of Education Shyqiri Bytyqi, and also demands the Assembly to organize a parliamentary debate on the work of the Minister.

Full letter:

Open Letter

To: the President of Kosovo;

The Speaker of the Republic of Kosovo;

The Prime Minister of Kosovo

The Accreditation Agency of Kosovo (KAA) after the meeting held on 26 July 2018 has published the announcement on the website, according to which the ISPE College, even that meets all the criteria demanded by the KAA for regular academic staff for each of the study programs, they did withdraw the accreditation of the already accredited and re-accredited programs five (5) times in a row, which was a result of international experts’ evaluations, in all Bachelor (BA) and Master (MA) study programs, with the exception on the Bachelor program on security studies (BA).

The ISPE College through a statement has reacted in a public manner and has informed the illegal actions committed by the Accreditation Agency of Kosovo, in relation with the decision taken on that day, 25 July 2018, which did not give any accreditation of the ISPE College programs, and has called on the Government of Kosovo,  and the other institutional mechanisms, like the State Prosecution, the Ombudsman, the EU’s presence in Kosovo and the diplomatic choir, to use all the means and their legal possibilities to stop the continuous persecution committed on the ISPE College, the academic staff, students, and parents of the students, but so far, with the exception of the reaction of the Ombudsman for reviewing the issue raised by the ISPE College, the other institutions did not react yet.

The illegal acts committed by the Accreditation Agency of Kosovo and the Minister of Education, are proved with the following:

The withdrawal of the accreditation is completely committed against the legal acts in power, which regulate the issue, that is specifically the Administrative Instruction no. 09/2017, Article 2

2. The Legal Department of the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology of Kosovo in the Legal assessment with No. 2 / 2-3600, dated 01.11.2017, ascertains that the suspension of the ISPE College programs was done in full contravention of the applicable legal acts that regulate this field but the KAA has completely disregarded this document by not taking it into account and has continued with the practices of issuing illegal decisions;

3. Minister of Education, Mr. Shyqiri Bytyqi, dismissed from the office the KAA’s Director only a few minutes prior to the beginning of the meeting of the Accreditation Agency and consequently the Board of the Agency issued decisions without the existence of the KAA Director as a legally competent person for the preparation of meetings of the KAA Board, among others, it is known that the KAA Director is ex officio member of the Board of the Kosovo Accreditation Agency;

4. The Minister of Education, Mr. Shyqiri Bytyqi has tolerated the functioning of the KAA without the existence of the Commission of Appeals in this institution, this is in flagrant contradiction with the Law on General Administrative Procedure (Law No. 05 / L-031), respectively Articles 125 -135. By denying to the Institutions of Higher Education, in this case to the ISPE College, the Constitutional rights to use all legal remedies against judicial and administrative decisions that violate the rights and interests in the manner prescribed by law (Article 32 of the Constitution of Kosovo).

5. The actions of the Minister of Education and today’s AKA decision to remove accreditation for study programs of the ISPE College without any legal basis is in open contradiction with the European Convention on Human Rights, namely Protocol 1, Article 2 (Right to Education), which provides that “no one can be denied the right to education”.

6. The Minister of Education, Mr. Bytyqi has committed flagrant violations of the Law on Higher Education in the Republic of Kosovo and the Law on Prevention of Conflict of Interest in Exercising the Public Functions by not taking any action against some members of the Agency Board who have made open marketing on TV in favor of certain institutions of private higher education and do continue to be an active part of certain institutions.

7. Regardless of the request of the former acting director of the KAA to the General Auditor of the Republic of Kosovo, where it is clearly stated that due to the grounded suspicious on irregularities in the decisions issued by the KAA, has officially required the conduction of a general and comprehensive audit in AKA, the Minister of Education fails to react and in return he dismisses the Acting Director of the KAA;

The ISPE College demands from: 1. The Accreditation Agency of Kosovo to immediately withdraw this arbitrary and unlawful decision and thus cease causing the consequences that are almost inevitable to the ISPE College.

The Accreditation Agency of Kosovo to immediately withdraw its announcement on its website, which contains a table of the education institutions and programs, to which is withdrawn the accreditation, which sends a clear message to the public, in general for the potential students, as well, and especially to not apply for the “withdrawn” programs by the State Council of Quality, since these are in the contrary of the Law for general administrative procedures and the Administrative Instruction no. 09/2017 for Accrediting the Higher Education Institutions in the Republic of Kosovo. This is means that the institutions of the Higher Education have the right to file a complaint and use all legal means against these actions, and as such these decisions are not final and plenipotentiary until all these legal means are used;

3.The Prime Minister of the Republic of Kosovo Mr. Ramush Haradinaj to take immediate measures against the Minister of Education Mr. Shyqiri Bytyqi, who has allowed the Accreditation Agency of Kosovo and became part of its arbitrary practices to the detriment of the higher education institutions, their students and their parents;

He has violated the law on the Higher Education, respectively the article 7, point 4, by appointing board members of the Accreditation Agency, people that are being part of private institutions of the higher education, namely represents a conflict of interest;

4. The Assembly of Kosovo, to require a parliamentary interpellation the Minister of Education for his actions and omissions in relation to KAA;

For the legal violation, and the irregularities committed on the ISPE College, we as an institution have filed a complaint to the Accreditation Agency of Kosovo, have publicly reacted and informed in continuous way the national institutions and their chairmen, like the Head of the KAA’s Board, the Minister of Education Mr. Shyqiri Bytyqi, and the Ombudsman Mr. Hilmi Jashari, and the international mechanisms in Kosovo.

We want to inform that the lack of the immediate actions in order to correct the consequences will make the ISPE College to inform the responsible international mechanisms for ensuring the quality in higher education ENQA and EQAR. The ISPE College does not want to take the responsibility of another potential ENQA and EQAR exclusion, which will fall on the students and the higher education institutions in Kosovo.

Best regards,

 Dr. Bajram Ibraj, Director of the ISPE College