President Jahjaga’s speech at the meeting of the National Anti-Corruption Council

Under the chairmanship of the President of the Republic of Kosovo, Mrs. Atifete Jahjaga, the concluding meeting for this year of the National Anti-Corruption Council was held today. The meeting was attended by the representatives of the Government of the Republic of Kosovo, the Parliament of Kosovo, other local institutions, representatives of the international missions, Ambassadors accredited in our country and representatives of the civil society.

Following is President Jahjaga’s speech delivered at the beginning of the meeting:

It has been a while since we have begun our reforms in the justice system, in order to create independent and efficient mechanisms in building of the state of law.

Kosovo has shown measurable advances in the field of the justice system reforms. There still remains work to be done in the field of fighting of corruption and organised crime. Fighting of these two greatest hindrances of our general progress must become a priority of each institution.

We must regain the trust of our citizens for the institutions and we can only do this by remaining uncompromised on this fight.

Our citizens are asking for accountability of our governance and they want to see the benefits from the state which we are building.

We have pledged to have zero tolerance on corruption and now is the time to begin with the implementation of the laws and policies which we have built. It is time to show concrete results.

Honourable participants,

National Anti-Corruption Council continues to realize its mission of inter-institutional coordination and harmonisation. During this period, we have solved many problems which have shown to be a hindrance to your cooperation as institutions mandated to fight corruption.

Recommendations presented at this Council, have been condensed inti a matrix, which is included with your materials.

IN general level, we have recommended and approved the National Anti-Corruption Strategy as an important success achieved on our European path. The Council has recommended and developed necessary legislation for fraudulent declaration of wealth or non-declaration o wealth, and the legal grounds for determination of the origin of wealth. Also, we have harmonised the necessary requirements on the Penal Code on corruptive acts.

Our recommendations for inter-institutional harmonisation based on the strategy have enabled establishment of mechanisms for better coordination between the Procurement, Police and Anti-Corruption Agency. Setting up of a joint statistical database has shown that our institutions have understood coordination seriously.

One of the problems presented more than once here was the small number of judges, prosecutors and police officers. This number has been increased during the last year, thus enlarging the capacities of these institutions. Furthermore, offering of augmented security for the judges has been earmarked as an immediate necessity for an independent judiciary. Implementation of the Law on Protection of Witnesses is a continuation of these endeavours and it must be considered as an important mechanism in case building. Decisions of the Prosecution to conclude the outstanding cases by June next year shows an added dedication.

During the proceedings of the Council we have understood that we need to work harder on improvement of the rules and policies of Procurement. Best legislation and its accompaniment with practices of electronic procurement is more than necessary. Cooperation of the institutions in this field must be better clarified and defined.

Case building and efficiency remains a challenging field. Corruptive cases are complex, but our dedication to build strong cases in shortes possible time must become our priority.

Honourable participants,

It is our duty to make Kosovo a state of no corruption, where rule of law prevails, as a guarantee of our function ability.

We must end the trend in which international reports continue to classify our country as a corrupted one, with organised crime. This dedication of ours must be realized not only to improve our position in these reports but foremost for the improvement of the lives of the citizens of the Republic of Kosovo.

We must eliminate the obstacles caused by corruption, in order for the citizens of Kosovo to act upon foreseeable rules and practices, without fear and any informal taxes.

Our general progress depends on our will to end the force of corruption and of organised crime.