Legal Affairs Coordinator at the Centre for Monitoring and Research (CeMI), Ivan Vukcevic commented on the daily press headlines in Morning programme ‘Boje Jutra’ on TV Vijesti.
He said that, after the statement by Justice Minister, Zoran Pazin on the work of the prosecution, the position of that department is very clear.
“When it comes to the reform of the judiciary and the prosecution in this area, it should be noted that Mr. Pazin made a new dynamic with this statement. The Ministry of Justice’s position is very clear now. We have seen the response of the Attorney General and can say that the present situation is very complex, and to make it even more complicated, the support is currently based on one conditional vote” Vukcevic said.
He recalled the results of the survey, which show that confidence in the judiciary has fallen from 49.1 to 40.8 percent in the last one and a half years.
While encouraging the adoption of the new Justice Reform Strategy 2019/2022, Vukcevic said the question of expediency was being raised because there was no analysis, as he said, of the effects of the two previous strategies.
“We can say that the condition is not good. We also have duty exercising situation in the Judicial Council, which is not good. In this part, it seems that we will have to wait again for the assistance of the international community because we cannot agree on what are important issues for our judicial system” Vukcevic said.
He estimated that distinguished lawyers were demotivated to become part of significant institutions for the justice system.
“I quote the example of Professor Nebojsa Vucinic. It is worrying that such a man could not be elected a member of the Judicial Council because of the current political situation,” Vukcevic said.
Asked what contributed to the continuity of the downward trend in confidence in the judiciary, Vukcevic explained that there were several factors involved.
“Holders of judicial functions do not care enough about citizens’ trust in integrity. We have been conducting research on the trial within a reasonable time and have noted that we still do not have good results. The Ministry of Justice stated in its strategy that there is significant room for progress. The main reason is that it is still not understood how important citizens’ trust in the judicial system of Montenegro really is” Vukcevic said.
He announced the CeMI roundtable, which will focus on the trial within a reasonable time, and which he said will be heard by a representative before the Strasbourg European Court, the President of the Basic Court, a representative of the Supreme Court, and one member from the bar.
Commenting on the decision of the Senate of the University of Montenegro on the scientific work of Associate Professor of the Faculty of Law, Bojana Lakicevic Djuranovic, and cases of plagiarized works, Vukcevic believes that software for the recognition of such works cannot be a solution in preventing this phenomenon.
“It is one tool that is good until one moment, after which it is necessary to show that someone has the academic honor and to come forward, to combat such phenomena. It takes personality, not software. It is much more effective to prevent than to treat the consequences, so it is necessary to eliminate the causes” Vukcevic said.
He stated that it is necessary to relieve the professors of mentoring too many graduate and master’s theses, because, as he concluded, it increases the possibility of plagiarism.
Vukcevic said that it is necessary to professionalize the State Election Commission, as well as the function of the president of election commissions.
“We also emphasized the importance of preferential voting, and we also need to think about the passage of time. Time passes, and we have no concrete solution. If a technical government happens now or in a month or in seven, eight months, it is not the same because it does not have the same effect and the same power of control. Precisely because these issues need to be addressed sooner” Vukcevic said.
Video is available at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wBfQJJbRd24