Why is the audit report of Faculty of Law being concealed?

Centre for Civic Education (CCE) noted that University of Montenegro (UoM) is once again using the old practice of hiding documents of public interest, despite the initial step forward it made in part of opening to public and initiatives from NGO sector.

CCE addressed the Law Faculty and UOM with a request based on free access to information, searching for copy of report regarding the financial management of Law Faculty done by the Internal Audit Service of University of Montenegro.

Law Faculty rejected that request along with referral to UoM, as the competent body for the submission of such information. UOM replied when legally prescribed deadline expired, with an act called «announcement», based on which it additionally violated the Free Access to Information Law which clearly states that the authority body decides by decision, based on which it allows the access to information or part of it or it rejects the request.

Nonetheless, based on such invalid act, it can be seen that UoM possesses such document and that it does want to make it public, even though there are all legal conditions for that. Namely, Free Access to Information Law states: «Competent body is obliged to publish following information on its website: 4) reports and other documents on work and state of affairs in areas from its competence», and determine the deadline within which that should be done – «Competen body is obliged to publish information from paragraph 1 of this Article within period of 15 days from the day they were created or passed, or adopted». Hence, the Report on financial management of Law Faculty done by the Internal Audit Service of University of Montenegro, and numerous reports that are missing on UoM website, which are an integral part of UOM’s competence and about which UOM discussed within its highest managing bodies, should be posted on website of UOM in accordance with the law. Instead, the UOM refuses to submit these information despite the direct requests for free access to information!

CCE calls upon the administration of UOM to show that it is committed to increase the transparency of work of UOM through these examples, and restore the reputation to this institution thereby, which was severely harmed precisely due to non-transparent, poor and irresposible management.

Mira Popović, programme associate