Lider - Interview Davorka Budimir,

The Headquarters of Transparency International in Berlin took away your licence but you are still registered in the Croatian Register of Associations. What is going on?

For us, it is business as usual. We are working under the same name except that we no longer cooperate with the Headquarters in Berlin. We do not understand this absurd situation. We were notified by email that we were disaccredited. We reacted to this ‘email’ by not accepting such unfolding of events because we did not breach a single principle from our Agreement. Transparency International Croatia (TIH) exists since 2000 and we received our initial accreditation in 2005. We existed under that name for five years without accreditation. We were terminated by Transparency International Headquarters on the basis of libellous and slanderous claims. If we were lying, I would not be sitting here now. The reasons given for terminating our cooperation are unacceptable because they are arbitrary and immeasurable: lack of cooperation with other civil society organisations gathered around Platform 112, using volunteers and financial instability.   

What course of events do you expect? And when?

Time is on our side. If parties to proceedings cannot amicable resolve their dispute then all that is left is legal proceedings and the German court has jurisdiction over this matter. We are more than ready for this eventuality because the arguments which they gave us are immeasurable and we mostly objected to the fact that three different bodies comprising the same people were deciding our fate. ie. The same people who are Members of the Board of Transparency International were hearing our appeals against decisions which they themselves had made. This is not transparent at all and only creates the illusion of a democratic process. When they were again deciding our fate from January to March of this year, absolutely nobody contacted us to ask us anything at all. How is this possible? If the Croatian case is the beginning of a much larger story, then this is a good thing. We are more than ready to clear the air on the global level. That which Transparency International advocates on the global level when they denounce somebody for corruption, namely, transparency and objectivity, must also apply and be visible within the organisation itself with regard to all of its chapters throughout the world, without exception.     

 

 

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