After we have published the text on non-transparent spending of budget funds, conflict of interest and good cooperation between the authorities and a private company during the construction of the Memorial complex to the fallen Serb civilians, the mayor of the City of Istočno Sarajevo, Ljubiša Ćosić, held a press conference where he spoke about the importance of building monuments and the culture of remembrance without denying a single fact from our text.
Author: Sanja Vasković
After the mayor of the City of Istočno Sarajevo, Ljubiša Ćosić, spoke at the press conference about importance of the culture of remembrance, planned project, and dry facts concerning the construction of the Memorial complex dedicated to Serb civilians who lost their lives in the 20th century, announcing a special department that will deal with the culture of remembrance, we asked him about lack of transparency in spending money of the citizens of Republika Srpska concerning the construction of the memorial complex.
Let’s recall that the RS Government had transferred first BAM 800.000 for the construction of the memorial complex in 2022 already. The construction work was delayed for almost a year due to certain problems concerning relocation of the heating pipes. In order to avoid possible competition, the city of Istočno Sarajevo has a few months ago, without any tender procedure, finally transferred BAM 500.000 to the Municipal veterans’ organization Istočno Novo Sarajevo that chose the company “UNIOTEC” through a direct agreement. The remaining funds were spent on design and construction of additional monuments.
As we have published, “UNIOTEC” is a company established in 2019, when it suddenly started getting jobs from the municipality of Istočno Novo Sarajevo and the City of Istočno Sarajevo that are managed by the SNSD cadre. Its revenue in only three years of business operations is almost three million marks. The Veterans’ organization could not give us a precise information about how much money has been spent so far, but what is genuinely disputable in this entire story or as the city mayor says “partnership relation” is the fact that the construction supervision is done by the brother of the president of the Veterans’ organization.
City mayor Ćosić doesn’t see anything disputable in this. Although he did admit that the supervisory body and the contracting authority are brothers, he accused our journalist at the press conference of disseminating misinformation.
Asking mayor any questions is a circus
“I do not allow this topic to be tainted by misinformation. Yes, Slaviša Tuševljak is brother of Dragiša Tuševljak, a man who worked in the municipality was chose for the supervision. He has all licenses and what is your problem with that? Dragiša Tuševljak was a soldier, member of the RS Army, wounded two times,” said the city mayor while responding to a questions we have repeatedly asked: is it a conflict of interest?
SPIN Info: “No one is against the memorial; we are just asking how the money is spent”.
“I do apologize for my tone, you shook me up, I will not allow you to taint such an important topic with your questions,” said the city mayor adding and we are trying to make a circus out of it.
The city mayor bluntly interrupted the press conference. He did not answer our questions. He did not deny the facts.
It remains unclear when and from which source over a million marks will be provided for the continuation of construction, why certain companies in the City are privileged, who decided to destroy the park and why the authorities think that they do not have to account to anyone.