While oncology patients are waiting for a treatment device, there is unlawful and excessive employment at the University Clinical Center Tuzla

“Some of the employees at the University Clinical Center (UCC) Tuzla are responsible for misconduct in public office and violation of the patients’ right to treatment. We, as a non-government organization, have filed a criminal complaint to the prosecutor’s office against unknown persons for misconduct in public office,” said Selman.


Written by: Mirnes Bakija/Inforadar


While oncology patients are waiting for the necessary treatment device (linear accelerator), there is unlawful and excessive employment at the UCC. Critically ill patients of Tuzla canton are forced to go to other centers across Bosnia and Herzegovina in order to receive prescribed therapy on which their lives depend. The activists of “Cardboard Revolution” state that the last tender for procurement of a linear accelerator was annulled due to inaptness of the UCC Tuzla management, which is why they have filed a criminal complaint.

Dževad Hadžić, president of the SDP Cantonal Board, presents an absurd situation that the UCC Tuzla has more lawyers than court in Tuzla, and adds that the jobs are created based on the needs of political parties and not the real needs.

“According to the information I have, there are currently about 275 people working on a contract and they are constantly extending their contracts. The consent of a government is needed in order to announce a public vacancy, and they are asking the Cantonal Government for the consent, and then they will employ these 275 people permanently. Now that we see it, it is clear to us that some party cronies of the Democratic Front (DF) and the Party of Democratic Action (SDA) will be recruited or some other tricks will be used to get these people recruited”,

Hadžić: As far as I know there is an absurd situation where people are working for private companies, but at the same time are doing traineeship at the clinical center

Hadžić states that at everything that is happening with UCC Tuzla is terrible and that the prosecutor’s office should investigate these employments as soon as possible.

“As far as I know there is an absurd situation where people work in private companies, very often and symptomatically from Živinice, and at the same time work as trainees at a clinical center, so how is this possible. Look here, they completed some medical schools somewhere in a hurry and that’s how it all works. It seems to me that the most important thing is that you are on good terms with the people in command in Živinice, and the rest is not important,” said Hadžić.

Federation auditors have also warned of suspicious and unlawful employment. The audit report reads that “a total of 155 employees were recruited on a fixed-term basis, whereof 110 are medical personnel, in line with the Regulation on the recruitment procedure for a fixed-term period without a public vacancy, which is not in accordance with the Law on Labor.”

Report of the FBiH Audit Office for 2022

The employees at the UCC Tuzla do not wish to speak out of fear, claim our interlocutors, and as Hadžić states they are giving up on the fight. He explains that the UCC Tuzla has top experts who can work anywhere in the world and who do not wish to put themselves in the situation of being involved in something like that. Ha adds that more and more doctors are leaving the UCC Tuzla, because people take the line of least resistance, which is a great loss both for the clinical center and the patients in Tuzla canton.

Until publication of this text InfoRadar did not manage to get in touch with the UCC Tuzla’s management.

Failed public procurement of a device for oncology patients

Adi Selman, activist of the “Cardboard revolution” explains how the oncology department at the UCC Tuzla has not been functioning for the last three years because the management failed to procure new linear accelerator, which was their duty, but were constantly fixing the old one.

“At one point, these devices stopped working, and that was in 2021. The patients were sent to other treatment centers, such as Zenica, Sarajevo, Mostar, and in the meantime the device was repaired and the patients returned to Tuzla for treatment. The device broke down again after some time, and the patients could not go to other centers, because they were pulled out from other centers. At that moment, the health care collapsed. This all happened around the end of last year and the beginning of this year, and when the patients were pulled out from radiotherapy in other centers and could not continue treatment in Tuzla was the time when first pressure from the media started,” said activist Selman.

Selman: Some of the employees at the University Clinical Center (UCC) Tuzla are responsible for misconduct in public office and violation of the patients’ right to treatment

He explains how did they get specific information about what is happening with the procurement of the device. In March of this year, as stated by activist Selman, the Government of Tuzla Canton remitted to UCC Tuzla an amount of about  six million BAM for procurement of a linear accelerator, which, as he points out, should have been acquired a long time ago. The UCC Tuzla also provided a portion of the funds and announced a tender. About a month earlier, the same tender was announced by the Clinical Center of the University of Sarajevo (KCUS). According to Selman, the UCC Tuzla tender was cancelled  because it was not announced according to the law, while the same tender of the KCUS passed.

“Our conclusion, which we have forwarded to the prosecutor’s office, is that the tender of UCC Tuzla was not announced in line with the law and that it was therefore cancelled. Some of the employees at the University Clinical Center (UCC) Tuzla are responsible for misconduct in public office and violation of the patients’ right to treatment. We, as a non-government organization, have filed a criminal complaint to the prosecutor’s office against unknown persons for misconduct in public office. We have clearly showed that the tender was not announced in line with the law, depriving the patients of tertiary health care and additionally jeopardizing the right to treatment. Furthermore, the oncology patients had additional costs for getting to other treatment centers,” stressed the non-government organization “Cardboard revolution”.

Partially accepted appeal of the Procurement Review Board for the procurement of a linear accelerator

Dževad Hadžić, president of the SDP Cantonal Board, also emphasized irregularities during announcement of the tender, which was established by the Procurement Review Board.

“Everything indicates that crime is being committed and the time has come for the prosecutor’s office to find out something. We had a period when an old device was used, and it is suspected that it did not work properly, and it is one of the problems that needs to be investigated”, concluded Hadžić.

“Acting director for two years, and the law prescribes a maximum of 6 months”

Hadžić states that Zijah Rifatbegović, former head of surgery at the UCC Tuzla, had filed a complained when a vacancy was annulled a year ago without any explanation.

“The current acting director has been here for two years already, although the law prescribes a maximum of 6 months. They have announced a public vacancy, but they annulled it when they saw that dr. Rifatbegović applied, as the current acting director cannot take part in the vacancy procedure because he would have to retire during the tenure. It is illegal activity,” explains Hadžić, adding that many things have piled up in the UCC Tuzla and it cannot be resolved with an intervention by the prosecutor’s office and law enforcement agencies.

Hadžić also referred to the fund raising done by the influencers for the reconstruction of oncology department at the UCC Tuzla, underling that it is quite commendable, but that isn’t their job.

“Tuzla canton has a budget of about 680 million marks and at the same time it has a budget of the health institute that exceeds 300 million. So there is a billion from these two budgets and you end up in a situation where influencers raise funds for you to buy sheets and other things. And on the other hand, the Government of Tuzla Canton brags about investing a huge amount of money into the UCC Tuzla by amending the budget, and it really has, but do you know where – in those clinics where the members of the majority of that government are working, in order to encourage or discipline them to continue supporting the government. There are no criteria to develop the Tuzla Clinical Center and to ultimately help patients, the only thing they want is to buy the councilors,” concluded Hadžić.

Activists from “Cardboard Revolution” also point out that the current director of UCC Tuzla has already been declared acting director for the third term. According to the Law on Health Care, in the event that there is no possibility of announcing a public vacancy, the acting director can have a mandate of no longer than six months.

“Now that the influencers have raised and exceeded the necessary amount of funds, and the media published that the acting director of UCC Tuzla has held a meeting with the company Deling, to implement a year-old initiative of the UCC Tuzla to renovate the day care clinic, to which Deling agreed. Meaning the following, the UCC Tuzla will renovate the day care clinic with its own funds, and the question is whether the money that is being raised will be directed to the oncology clinic at all. They now suddenly have money to renovate, and they did this to avoid putting themselves in a position where influencers donate money to them and they have to accept it,” explained activist Selman.

At the end Selman underlines that everyone is focusing on the story about how public procurement process is complex, which is not the case.

“Both Zenica and Sarajevo have procured the same device and the statement that it is complicated isn’t correct. It is complicated for those who does not know; and not complicated for those who know”, concluded Selman.

Foto: Linearni akcelerator

Photo: Linear accelerator

Denijal Tulumović, director of the UCC Tuzla, has just a day before yesterday announced the possibility that the new attempt to procure the linear accelerator will be a failure. Jasmin Kadić, president of Naša stranka Cantonal Board in Tuzla canton has on that occasion said that the lack of care for cancer patients reflected in the example of public procurement obstruction, who instead of their own city have to seek health services in other cities and cantons and pay for these services, as well as  for transport and accommodation, is utterly terrifying.

“According to the documents, which we had access to, the responsibility for the failed tenders for the linear accelerator procurement, due to which oncology patients cannot receive health care services in the UCC Tuzla , rests exclusively with the management of the UCC Tuzla headed by acting director Denijal Tulumović (SDA)”, said Kadić.



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