Ex EP member: Bosnia could become a senior's home

NEWS 19.07.2018 19:22
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Source: N1

Bosnia’s political scene is ridden with corruption, and if youth keeps leaving the country as they are now, the country could turn into "senior’s home", former member of the European Parliament (EP) and ex EP rapporteur for Bosnia and Herzegovina told N1 on Thursday.

German politician and former member of the Bundestag, Doris Pack, said she would have been happy if Bosnia would have made more progress, as reading the European Commission’s Progress report on the country makes her “sad”.  

“We have masses of young people who are leaving this country daily, and yearly it amounts to a small town. The country could, in 20 or 30 years, become a senior’s home. I don’t want that,” she said.  

Pack said that Bosnia has “many capacities that remain unused,” and that there is “huge corruption in politics, weak institutions that need to be improving on democracy, a strong gray economy and problems with people who cannot find jobs.”

“All of that is not good, and it could be much better if the politicians would tend to the needs of the citizens,” she said.  

Pack would not name the politicians she blames for the situation specifically but said it was “those who abuse their position and don’t move toward the future,” and those who “rely on national (ethnic) interests.”

Bosnia must enter the European Union as an integral country, she said, “but this does not mean that the entities don’t have significance.”

Bosnia is comprised of two semi-autonomous entities, one mostly populated by Bosnian Serbs, Republika Srpska, and the other shared between Bosniaks and Bosnian Croats, the Federation.  

Nationalist politicians, especially those in Republika Srpska, have steadily been advocating the significance of entities, saying that the joint central government is undermining its sovereignty and development.  

“This means that they need to work together for the well-being of the citizens. It means that politicians must reject their egoistic ways,” she said, adding that many local politicians only think about their own well-being and not that of the citizens.  

Pack said that the EU wants Bosnia as a member, but that certain conditions must first be met in order for this to happen.  

“Those conditions are not being met. Considering that we (the EU) have an interest in the well-being of the citizens, we must determine whether there is progress or regression,” she said, explaining that the Union is trying to help, but that what it says is being rejected or not implemented in Bosnia.  

“This country has suffered so much, and I want the citizens of this country to live a good life as, for example, my children and my family do,” she said.  

“The judiciary is in a bad condition, corruption is huge, and many other things suffer because of it. You cannot draw in investments because investors don’t trust this business environment,” she said.