The Social Democratic Party’s (SDP) political director Damir Masic told N1 that Bosnia’s Election Law will not be amended any time soon because the Croat Democratic Union (HDZ BiH) demands that the Constitution be violated.
In the last couple of days, the Venice Commission met with the relevant electoral stakeholders in order to provide expert assistance in the process of on-going discussions on necessary changes to Bosnia and Herzegovina’s Election Law.
After the latest meeting with leaders of the major parties in the FBiH, held on Tuesday, the Venice Commission said the talks are heading in the right direction, but that no agreement has yet been reached.
Masic said political compromise is hard to achieve.
“It's more or less clear that the biggest problem is in the HDZ BiH. The international community is also aware of this because the talks have been going on for months. All other parties shifted their views and demands and showed readiness for compromise but not the HDZ BiH,” Masic said. “They see the implementation of Constitutional Court’s decision in a way which suits them, which has nothing to do with what the Court actually said.”
Masic told N1 that the Venice Commission’s attitudes only confirmed that the FBiH Constitution must not be violated by future solutions. However, the HDZ BiH requests that the constitution be violated in the part concerning the proportionality of representation of the peoples. Therefore, Masic added, it is difficult to be an optimist, knowing the HDZ will not change their demands at all.
Two years ago the Constitutional Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina ruled that some provisions of the Election Law were inconsistent with the state Constitution. Since then the authorities have failed to act in the legally allowed timeframe resulting in a further court ruling to delete two sections of the Election Law that treat the matter of representation in the FBiH House of Peoples.
The Venice Commission is an advisory body of the Council of Europe, composed of independent experts in the field of constitutional law.