What type of Government organization do we need?

Centre for Civic Education (CCE) has today presented analysis What type of Government organization do we need?, which is a part of regular activities of CCE within the subprogramme Accountability and Transparency of Authorities.

Svetlana Pešić, CCE programme associate, has pointed out that „organization, functionality and transparency of the executive branch is dominantly affecting the quality of political decisions, and consequently the quality of life of all citizens expressed through good housekeeping attitude of authorities towards resources and public interest“.

„What type of Government does Montenegro need? What is the role of inner cabinets, what are their advantages and disadvantages? How much does it cost us having members of Governments and advisers of the inner cabinet? How can we reach an effective organization of the government that is resposible to citizens? were some of initial questions that have motivated Centre for Civic Education’s (CCE) team to reflect on existing system of the Government’s organization in Montenegro, by using a comparative analysis of certain countries in our vicinity, as well as EU member states, but also of those who are neither, but, due to other reasons, they can serve as role model to Montenegro. We have compared the example of Montenegro to Serbia, Croatia, Slovakia, Germany and Iceland. Also, CCE will give recommendation of new organization of Government of Montenegro that can be useful also to actors that will in October 2016 participate in parliamentary elections”, added Pešić.

cgo-cce-kakva-nam-organizacija-vlade-treba »

Reconciliation in region from the angle of different actors in country and region

Centre for Civic Education (CCE) organised a public debate titled “Reconciliation in region from the angle of different actors in country and region”, in cooperation with the Humanitarian Law Fund (FHP).

Daliborka Uljarević, CCE Executive Director, opened the debate by emphasising that “we should insist on substantive facing with the past, primarily because of the justice – justice for victims, justice for future generations, justice as a guarantee that these crimes won’t happen again”. She marked political structures as key actors that hinder the adequate processing of war crimes in states that were created after the disintegration of Yugoslavia: “Those political structures were primarily created during war conflicts, many of which were directly involved in the creation or instigation of ethnical and religious conflicts. These conflicts were everywhere described as state, national projects, whereas it was all a cover for big robbery, as the essence of this mass crime. That manipulation was the basis for the creation of not just political, but politically-dependent current tycoon, economic elite”, underlined Uljarević. She reflected on proceedings before national courts that, according to her, “had numerous omissions and imperfections, whereby political structures obstructed their work and continue in doing so. They are not in terms with the essential opening of this process, discovering the truth, thereby achieving the justice. Only the individualisation of guilt can truly lead to needed facing with the past, uncover the creators and perpetrators of most heinous crimes committed during civil wars”, concluded Uljarević by reflecting on the importance of the Initiative for RECOM.

IMG_1196 »

Results of annual research on the media financing from public funds in Montenegro presented

Centre for Civic Education (CCE) organised a conference today, with the support of British Embassy in Podgorica, titled « Media financing from public funds in Montenegro ».

H.E. Ian Whitting, British ambassador in Montenegro, opened the conference and elaborated the motives of Embassy’s participation in this project by pointing out: “Everyone who lives in a democratic society is aware of the importance of media. Democracy can hardly develop and endure without free media that report on matters of public interest in a professional and ethical manner. In Montenegro, like in any other transitional society, importance of this role is even greater. It is up to media to investigate cases, to report, and question ingrained opinions and customs.” He simultaneously noted that “Here, the media are still vulnerable, regardless of the importance of their role. Media across the globe face serious financial problems, and the situation is even worse on small Montenegrin market.” He further reflected on the assessment of the European Commission on Montenegro that “uncertain economic situation of journalists increases the risk of interference in editorial policy and possible self-censorships, and has a negative impact on the quality of reporting and professionalism.” Finally, he expressed the satisfaction that “we were able to support the work of our friends from the Centre for Civic Education on the project “Equal chances for all media in Montenegro”. I expect that this contribution will result in the increase of transparency and more accurate definition of mechanisms of financing of media. Final outcome will be a healthier media scene and a better position and work of media employees. Montenegro and its citizens can only benefit from this”, Witting concluded.

Daliborka Uljarević, CCE Executive Director, underlined that “we can speak about freedom of media, media pluralism and competitive market only in normatively and institutionally defined areas. However, all these principles are nowadays undermined in Montenegro. There are no clearly defined criteria for the allocation of resources to media from public funds, which easily converts discretional authorisations into various forms of abuse. Then, we have protectionism, and further media polarisation which renders media market into a fixed match, which again has a negative impact on already concerning state of affairs within media scene in Montenegro. In such circumstances, freedom is being narrowed, particular interests gain on strength at the expense of professional ethics, and Montenegrin society, with citizens in its core, becomes the victim of conflict of government with “misfit” media, but also of internal media wars”. She stated that “CCE’s findings show that the financing of media in Montenegro from public funds remains uncontrolled, unregulated and opaque, as well as that the authorities failed to invest efforts to improve this area, even though this topic has been the subject of discussion during last four years, and it is a matter of growing concern for relevant international organisations, since it poses a sophisticated, but powerful, form of pressure on media, undermines the competitiveness on market and development of media, especially of media critically oriented toward the authorities.” Uljarević also stated “I know that many are angry and that they are trying for years to dispute some of the undisputed facts that we present, but there are numbers and figures based on official replies from public sector bodies, which prove that authorities «award» the media which report positively on them, through selective allocation for advertising and other public funds – thereby practically «sanctioning» critically oriented media through the deprivation of those resources. It is worth of mentioning that this is the money of tax payers who, nevertheless, have different opinion on social-political situation and such investments in media are a reflection of disrespect of those differences among our citizens.” She assessed that “it is hard to come across an objective argumentation as to why media in Montenegro should not have equal chances, therefore I hope that during today’s discussion we will come up with new, more constructive suggestions that would regulate this area in a non-discriminatory and sustainable manner”. “Finally, government in Montenegro will change one day, and those who are currently in a favourable position, given the current state of affairs, could soon find themselves in a completely opposite situation. Thus, there is no reason for all media not to advocate the conditions that secure fair competitiveness and narrow the field for any potential interference from government”, Uljarević concluded.

IMG_0800 »

Montenegrin premiere of triple award winner at Cannes Film Festival and the award ceremony closed the Fast Forward Film Festival 2015

Tonight, Centre for Civic Education (CCE) closed at 20h00 the sixth edition of FAST FORWARD Human Rights Film Festival 2015 with Montenegrin premiere of triple award winner of Cannes Film Festival – film “Son of Saul” and award ceremony for the affirmation of human rights and civic activism.

Daliborka Uljarević, CCE Executive Director, on the occasion of the Festival closing ceremony reminded that “we have had the opportunity during last five days to travel through the FAST FORWARD Human Rights Film Festival and witness and experience some of the stressful, yet motivating fortunes of heroes and heroines, by socializing and believing that human rights are the foundation of each open and democratic society”. She underlined that “fight for human rights is universal, it has no boundaries, nor should it be prone to compromises. FAST FORWARD Human Rights Film Festival, magnified with its base of fans, supporters, activists, fighters for human rights, is not such a large space, but it has an important mission in Montenegrin society. We succeeded in making it present and visible, as well as to shook the xenophobic stereotypes by using film as a mean of influence and education, constantly aware of the fact that without the continuous education and various forms of exchange of experience there can be no progress, education, maturity of individuals and society, nor human values and open heart”, Uljarević added.

Prior to the final screening, Uljarević awarded this year’s awards for the affirmation of human rights and civic activism.

LEX_7233 »