Schmidt: Bosnia can become laughing stock if it can't pay to print ballots

NEWS 26.05.2022 16:38
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Source: N1

Bosnia could become the world’s laughing stock if it turns out it was unable to pay for the printing of its election ballots, High Representative Christian Schmidt told N1 in Banja Luka Thursday after a visit to this city.

Schmidt stayed in Banja Luka where he met with Mayor Drasko Stanovukovic to whom he proposed to suggest Banja Luka whenever he finds himself in a situation where potential investments in the region are discussed. The High Representative added that he was quite impressed with everything the city did for the youth.

When asked by N1 if he expects other politicians to use this visit to meet with him, Schmidt said the following:

“I don’t understand the logic at all. I mentioned Stanivukovic as a positive example of development in BiH and at the UN. The fact is that we are in a country where it would be good for young people to have political roles. I don't understand what kind of games are being played here, can people here pretend to deal with real topics, serious topics instead of discussing policies? What I heard about the work of the [Banja Luka] City Administration were the right things.”

Answering the question of whether he would pass the decision on the budget for the October local elections because the BiH authorities have repeatedly failed to do so, Schmidt confirmed he has had some serious discussions on this matter with some responsible politicians.

“I had the opportunity to say very clearly what I expected which is that the financing of the elections must be secured. I still hope we can go in a reasonable direction, but everyone has to help. We can start from the assumption that I will also deal with this issue very intensively in the coming days. I want to warn those who want to gain political points. I won’t place Minister Bevanda at the centre of political issues. BiH could become an object of irony and ridicule from others if it cannot pay for the printing of ballots,” High Representative Schmidt said, avoiding answering the question asked by N1.

When asked when he might bring this decision, Schmidt answered:

“Certainly not after October 2, when elections are scheduled. Rest assured, I am pragmatic but I’m extremely looking forward to seeing the problem get resolved.”

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