President Thaçi: Fighting of corruption to be set as a priority above all other priorities

Prishtina, March 27th, 2019 – The President of the Republic of Kosovo, Hashim Thaçi, attended today the conference on Prevention and Fighting of High Level Corruption, organised by the OSCE Mission in Kosovo.

President Thaçi stated that corruption is a serious threat, not only to our country but also to the most developed countries and is a challenge to democracy.

“The corruption phenomenon is a challenge on a global level. Apart from the consequences it causes to the political and socio-economic developments, it also has consequences to the field of security,” said President Thaçi.

The head of state said that as a new state we must make no compromises to the prevention and fighting of this phenomenon.

“The rule of law and good governance, aimed to fight negative phenomena, including the corruption in all levels, nurture economic development and regulate the wellbeing of citizens,” said President Thaçi.

Republic of Kosovo, according to the President, has undertaken a number of activities directed towards the consolidation of the rule of law and in function of respecting of the constitutional order, and has approved relevant legislation in order to create the relevant institutional and inter-institutional mechanisms for this purpose.

The head of state also added that Republic of Kosovo during its state building also went through challenges, some of which were overcome and some of which have already been addressed.

“The latest is the Report on the Human Rights in Kosovo for 2018, published by the US State Department, which has identified many advances in the justice sector, but also the challenges which lie ahead,” said the President.

The President pointed out that during 2018 and the first part of 2019, Republic of Kosovo has undertaken large steps in consolidation of the legislation related to the fight against corruption, bye drafting new laws or changing and amending the actual ones.

“The Kosovo Criminal Code, which is expected to enter into force in April of this year, the Law on Extended Competencies on the Confiscation of Assets, the Law on Disciplinary Liability of Judges and Prosecutors, the Law on Courts, Law on Kosovo Judicial Council, Law on Prosecutorial Council of Kosovo, Law on Protection of Whistle-blowers, Law on Prevention of Conflict of Interest in Discharge of a Public Function, Law on Internal Control of Public Finances…this legislation allows for a more efficient alerting, prevention, investigation and conviction of criminal acts of corruptive nature,” said President Thaçi.

The head of state said that this legislation offers protection to all those who inform or report transgressions in both public and private sectors.

He also added that Republic of Kosovo has gradually increased the number of judges and prosecutors, in accordance with the requirements, and has increased the institutional capacities on law enforcement and has also raised the budget of all law enforcement institutions, which have proved to be challenges in the recent past.

“Despite the results, we must continue with the uncompromised fight against corruption, we must overcome the identified shortcomings, by acting within and applying the law in a stricter manner and with far greater dedication,” said President Thaçi.

He also said that the judges and prosecutors in the Republic of Kosovo have better working conditions and more dignified earnings.

“It is now up to them to work with determination and professionalism, to respect the oath they swore on the day they took up their duties,” said President Thaçi.

The head of state called upon all the officials in the law enforcement institutions, particularly the judges and prosecutors, to make the fighting of corruption a priority above all priorities.