Source: DanasBelgrade - The Ombudsman, the State Audit Institution, the Commissioner for Information of Public Importance, the Committee to Prevent Conflict of Interest, the Public Procurement Administration and the Commission for Protection of Rights warned yesterday that the lack of basic working conditions puts a strain on their ability to perform their constitutional and legal powers and achieve the goal for which they were founded.
In the joint announcement, signed by the top people of six independent institutions, it is stated that, in spite of this, in contravention of the responsibilities of executive authorities under the law, the State Audit Institution (SAI) still does not have its premises seven months after the appointment of the SAI Council. The announcement further states that almost a year after the election of the Republic Ombudsman and three years after the enactment of the Law on Ombudsman, Deputy Ombudsmans have not been elected and the premises given to this office enable it to hire only a quarter of the necessary number of employees. The Commissioner for Information has also worked with one quarter of the required staff for years because of the lack of space.
Five years after they began operating, the Public Procurement Administration ands the Commission for Protection of Rights do not have their own premises and they work in inadequate rooms given for their use by other public authorities on a case-by-case basis. The announcement also states that the future of the Republic Committee to Prevent Conflict of Interest is often questioned without arguments. The required autonomy of independent authorities is compromised by their dependence on executive authorities for funding and other working conditions, reads the announcement.