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Member of Senate, Nikola N. Kovačević at the fifth session of the Working group for the Implementation of the OSCE/ODIHR Recommendations

Podgorica, 7th November 2017 - Member of Senate, Nikola N. Kovačević has participated at the fifth session of the Working group, which is responsible for analyzing the Recommendations from the OSCE/ODIHR Election Observation Mission Final Report on the parliamentary elections held on 16th October 2016, in the part relating to funding of electoral campaign.

Member of Senate has presented the activities of the State audit institution on auditing annual financial statements of the political parties.

 

Article 43 of the Law on financing political parties and election campaign significantly limits autonomy and independence of the SAI in selection of the audited entities, which is not in line with Article 9 of the Law on SAI.  Taking into account the above mentioned, as well as the opinion of SIGMA, experts of the Council of Europe and the Directorate-General for Budget, the State Audit Institution has submitted an initiative to amend the Law on Financing of Political Entities and Election Campaigns in the part related to the obligation of the State Audit Institution to perform audit of annual consolidated financial statements of political entities whose total income exceeds 10,000 €. In this regard, the Senate has proposed the amendment of Article 43 of this Law in such a way that: “The State Audit Institution audits the annual consolidated financial statements of the political entities based on the assessed risk and criteria set out in the Instruction on the methodology for performing financial audit and regularity audit”.

Member of Senate has informed the representatives of the Working group with proposals for improvement of the Law on financing political entities and election campaign related to the following: status of group of citizens and non-governmental organizations as political entities; the issue whether the own funds are source of financing for election campaign; regulating the issue of settling outstanding liabilities after the end of election campaign and etc.

Member of Senate has emphasized that it should be considered to introduce sanctions for the parties, which were given adverse audit opinions on their business operations from year to year.