By: Haris LJEVO
Ever since the beginning of negotiations on the Election law of Bosnia and Herzegovina, HDZ leader Dragan Covic has kept the entire state hostage by his minimalistic demands. He made it clear to everyone that the Election law will be either to his taste or it will not be changed at all.
Numerous representatives of the opposition and independent intellectuals have warned about dangerous intentions of Dragan Covic. They have warned that Dragan Covic is unstoppable and that he may continue implementing his agenda to the point of causing a conflict of a sort in order to realize his goal. Those who warned about his dangerous intentions have been characterized as Bosniak nationalists and war agitators.
It was only the question of time when Covic would reveal to everyone how serious his intentions were.
Only three days after he had publicly announced a 'plan B', the same public found out what in practice such plan would mean – in the case of migrants.
Unlawfully appointed police commissioner of the Ministry of Interior of Herzegovina-Neretva Canton, Ilija Lasic, a member of Covic's party, decided to disobey the decision of the state government and stopped the convoy with migrants on its way from Sarajevo to Mostar. The message was clear – HDZ does not respect the state decisions. To be more precise: a state putsch was carried out on one part of BH state territory.
It was the last straw, but not the first time we see HDZ's attitude and true feelings for BiH in practice. It is worth remembering some past events.
Let's travel back to 2009, when on the eve of football game between Siroki Brijeg and Sarajevo, a fan of Sarajevo team Vedran Puljic was killed, his murderer was released from the police station in Siroki Brijeg the same evening and escaped to Croatia. Nobody in the police has been held responsible not to mention charged for the offence of letting murderer escape.
At the last elections in Stolac, HDZ won the mayor's seat by bringing voters with buses from Metkovic, and when Bosniak observers protested on account of election irregularities, some of them (the observers) got themselves criminal charges. The cantonal court in Mostar pronounced guilty Salko Baljic, Adnan Bucuk and Emin Zeco for interrupting election process and dealt them a prison sentence.
The last elections for Mostar were held 10 years ago, and HDZ's mayor Ljubo Beslic has reigned over Mostar ever since. Any talks on changing the city statute have been blocked by HDZ as it simply has not been their interest to see any change as long as they the absolute power over the town.
That the police chief Ilija Lasic was unlawfully appointed 3 years ago, was confirmed by the Cantonal court, but Ilija remains in the same role.
The Constitutional court has been awaited for 15 years to implement the decision by which the Serbs should be recognized as the constituent nation in the Herzegovina-Neretva canton. At each session of the cantonal assembly, HDZ blocked any attempt at changing the statute.
HDZ established its own entity of some sort in which it enjoys absolute power long ago. What is required for Covic to achieve his supreme goal is an election unit which would secure him a guaranteed position as the member of the Presidency BiH.
Stopping the convoy with migrants at the entry to the Herzegovina canton must be a clear message to the state institutions and the international community as to who they are dealing with. Somebody has to be held responsible for the putsch, as the red line has been crossed.
Should Covic be forgiven yet again, after the October elections, we may as well need passport to enter the Herzegovina canton.