Pristina, November 6 2019 – Kosovo Law Institute (KLI), with the support of US Department – International Narcotics Bureau and Law Enforcement Matters (INL) and NED publishes the report: “Progress and regress of the Councils: Monitoring report of the Judicial and Prosecutorial Council (April 1 – June 30 2019)”.
KLI’s findings show that the Judicial and Prosecutorial Council even during the second quarter of 2019 were faced with lack of efficiency, accountability and integrity in exercising legal and constitutional responsibilities.
Second quarter of 2019, as in previous years was not progressive in increasing efficiency of those control mechanisms, especially to the judicial system. On the other hand, during 2019 there were many cases when judges, prosecutors, presidents of courts and certain chief prosecutors have violated principles and Code of Conduct, but none of them was not dismissed due to poor performance or due to disciplinary measures. Except KPC, which during second quarter of 2019 through disciplinary measure has proposed a prosecutor for dismissal, and has degraded another prosecutor within the prosecutorial system.
According to positive legislation, the Councils are obliged that every three months to invite Presidents of Courts, respectively Chief Prosecutors of the Prosecutions to report before members of the Councils. Whereas KJC has fulfilled these legal obligation, KPC did not deal with this issue at all.
Despite the fact that there is a relative increase of efficiency of both Councils in adopting secondary legislation, due to large number of unimplemented obligations over the years by two Councils, there are still unapproved regulations, obligation of whose approval has been since from previous laws, which now are repealed.
KLI during monitoring the KJC found that the legal obligation was not fulfilled for the establishment of new branches of the Basic Court of Pristina in the municipality of Fushe Kosova and Obiliq. As stipulated in law, their establishment would affect to unload the most loaded Court with cases in country, in Pristina, and will increase access to justice for the citizens of these municipalities.
Transparency with the public, media and civil society, still remains challenge for the KJC and KPC, there is no will of councils to overcome this challenge. Regarding KJC, KLI’s findings for the transparency of the KJC during second quarter of 2019 show that if we look at the second quarter of this year as a separate period, KJC has a significant progress of transparency in some certain fields. Regarding previous periods, respectively sublegal acts that KJC issued before April1 2019, the status quo is almost maintained, that even during second quarter of 2019 the KJC did not publish those documents.
Whereas, regarding prosecutorial system, KLI finds that this system has a rapid regress in relation to transparency level, especially after the centralization of prosecutorial information by the State Prosecutor, through the KPC’s Regulation on the Communication Service in the Prosecutorial System. During 2018, percentage of requests for access to public documents and information on which KLI did not receive a response, was 51.45%, while this percentage during the first quarter of 2019 was reduced to 19.23%, which fact was evidenced as progress in the previous report of the KLI. But, during second quarter of 2019, so after the centralization of information by the CHSPO, this percentage was increased to 81.03%. This data explains for that, the prosecutorial system is now almost hermetically closed and completely non-transparent, except in exceptional cases.
KLI has found that Councils continue with the same access in relation to decision taking and adoption of secondary legislation, and continuously violating the law. Those actions of the Councils seriously violate legality and legitimacy of the justice system in Kosovo. Also, at the KJC and the KPC lacks professional access regarding the drafting of secondary legislation of the Councils.
Lack of will and integrity of two Councils to fulfill with efficiency, integrity and professionalism their legal and constitutional obligations is the worst message that these two Councils can transmit to the judges and prosecutors, as well as to the general public. This access turns it into working principle the inefficiency, lack of accountability and impunity.
In the part of special findings of KLI’s monitoring for the judicial and prosecutorial system, report treats the topic of the recruitment process of judges of the special departments, “threat” of the Bar Syndicate to begin the strike, bomb threat at the KJC, termination of the process for the election of the Chief Prosecutor of the SPRK, failure in practice of the KPC’s Regulation on Communication Service, “cold war”, of the KPC with the Coordinator Shqipdon Fazliu and the KPC gave illegal reward to Kujtim Munishi to appoint him as acting Chief Prosecutor of Pristina. Finally, the report provides concrete recommendations on how to increase transparency, efficiency and accountability in the prosecutorial and judicial system.
For more find attached the report “Progress and regress of the Councils: Monitoring report of the Judicial and Prosecutorial Council (April 1 – June 30 2019)”.