21/02/2024

Is head of the SNSD caucus “clean” before the law?

Igor Žunić, today the deputy and head of the SNSD caucus in the National Assembly of Republika Srpska, started his political career as a councilor in the Municipal Assembly of Derventa, and in 2008 he became deputy mayor of this municipality. He remained in that position until 2014, when he became the RS NA deputy. A psychologist by profession, Žunić also worked at the local Social Welfare Center and the Secondary School Center in Derventa.

According to the information available on our portal, the Žunić family has been engaged in private business since 2016, when it created a space for technical inspection of vehicles and registered the company “Auto servisni centar AS d.o.o. Derventa”, but it is registered, as you can see in the photos below, to Žunić’s wife. The total revenue of “As” amounted BAM 300.000 in the last year, and the company gets tenders from the city and the city enterprises effortlessly and that has been so for many years now. Interestingly, a huge part of these deals was concluded through direct agreements.

It is interesting that the ownership structure of “As” also includes Marijana Jakšić – Pijetlović, the wife of the director of the local utility company “Komunalac” Denis Pijetlović (Žunić’s party colleague and best man), and as can be seen “As” is doing a portion of its business deals with “Komunalac” and the Health Care Center.  In addition to being Žunić’s friend and best man, Pijetlović is also a SNSD deputy in the Assembly of Srpska and also owns a company called “Deni”, which deals with insurance representation, and the address of its main office is identical to the one where “As” is located – 109 Željeznička Street, Derventa. Apart from the fact that it was founded in 2020, there is no more information about this company, so we could not check the possible connection with the City of Derventa or the public enterprises of the city.

For the sake of the context it is important to add the “third wife”, that is, the third owner of As, Dajana Nović, whose husband, Igor Nović, is the director of the company and SNSD councilor in the local assembly. The official website of the City of Derventa reads that Nović works for the Microcredit Foundation “Sunrise”, but the fact that he is the director of As is not mentioned.

Derventa Councilors

Igor Žunić admits to Infoveza that his wife is a co-owner of the company “Auto centar AS”, but also that a total of 47 out of 5.500 inspected vehicles, which he says was the number of inspected vehicles in this year, were the vehicles from the public sector.

“It is not forbidden, in terms of the law, and the elected representatives (or executive office holders or their advisors) should only abstain from voting on any issue that directly concerns the company in which they or their family members have a financial interest, and they should explain the reasons why they abstained from voting”, explained Ožegović, and the only question he raises is the question of the ethics of this type of work.

On the other hand, analyst Tanja Topić describes the situation as an illustration of a deep-rooted clientelistic system based on nepotism.

“But that’s not the problem, the problem is that this is a pattern of behavior is considered normal by its creators and participants, and they see the problem in those who talk about it as a social problem. Another problem is that the majority of citizens accept this model, they follow the line of least resistance, whereat they will get some benefits or privileges for themselves or will not be stirring thing up as to avoid troubles in paradise. However, this is deeply cemented in society and it will take us decades to regenerate. There is no word on the complete recovery of such a sick society”, said Topić categorically.

Žunić’s land is used as a parking lot?!

 However, this is not the most interesting part of the story. Namely, Igor Žunić, together with his brother, is the owner of a very interesting plot in Derventa – the parking lot of the city’s Health Care Center (with which, as you could have seen, deals were also struck), plot number 2650!

The source of our portal from Derventa claims for Infoveza that the given plot is a family inheritance that was purchased in the 80s by the Health Care Center (the then municipal hospital), while the Žunićs got an apartment as compensation, which was later sold. This is supported by the fact that the former hospital, today’s Health Care Center, built a parking lot on the land, which it still uses for its own purposes. Infoveza also learns that the house of the Žunić family was also located on that plot, which was also demolished due to the construction of the parking lot. However, judging by the papers in our possession, the Žunićs are still the owners of the plot, so we asked the SNSD deputy a question related to the disputed land.

Žunić said that he had inherited the land from his parents, and that no exchange or sale was made in this sense.

“The plot is used as a free parking lot at the Health Care Center. We have never received a single pfennig from the budget of any institution for the use of that plot, nor did we ask for it. We currently do not use that land, which is why we have allowed parking, and due to the nature of the work I do and the performance of a public function, we decided that we do not want to have any financial benefit from the city budget. It is important to note that my brother is not a public figure, but that we have agreed as a family that during my public office, our family will not receive any financial benefit from the budget based on inherited private property”, said Žunić.

Although it is not related to a specific case, it is important to mention the fact that the neighboring plot was sold by the then owner to the hospital under the same system, while due to the wartime events, it has never been registered to the hospital/health care center. After that, the owner resold the plot ten years ago and today a residential building is being built on it!

It is interesting that the head of the SNSD caucus does not shy away from discussions on social networks, but from time to time also threatens with lawsuits and criminal charges. More than a year ago, more precisely before the last general election, Žunić engaged in a discussion on the Facebook page “Grad Derventa – Direkt” and then promised to officially publish all the assets he owns.

“Since I will soon officially publish on my FB page all the assets that I own and that I have owned before starting with the politics, you and the general public will have the opportunity to familiarize yourself with it all. These lies that you are spreading put my family in danger and I hope that you will be held accountable both before the law and before the God. I now invite you or your attorneys to come to me and I will give you a written consent to view and disclose all the assets I own on my behalf. This is an official invitation and if you don’t respond to it as to check and publish the information, it will be another basis for a lawsuit…”

PHOTO: FB comment

Why Žunić never disclosed his assets remains unknown, but our portal checked the assets that the deputy reported to the CEC.

In his asset declaration form Žunić states that he owns an apartment of 90 square meters worth BAM 150.000, a summer house worth BAM 40.000, the aforementioned land of three thousand square meters worth, as he states, BAM 5.000, a Citroen Picasso and a garage worth BAM 20.000.

 

BY: Stefan Blagić/Infoveza

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