Discussion on the governance of mayors of largest municipalities mid-way through their mandate

Democracy Plus (D+) held a roundtable discussion with mayors, deputy mayors and officials of various municipalities in the country on the launched report “Progress in Good Governance Commitments – 2 Years Later”, on the commitments signed in October 2017 by mayors of the largest municipalities in the country, when running for office.

The Mayors committed to ensure: Publication of decisions on the web, financial transparency, public consultations in neighborhoods and villages, transparency in public procurement, publication of reports on the commitments kept, and address citizens’ requests through online platforms.

Debora Peci, researcher at D+, presenting the findings of this report, noted that the assessment of 2019 observes that not all municipalities managed to fulfill all commitments this year. Unlike last year, this year the municipality of Prishtina has managed to meet its commitments, followed by the municipalities of Peja and Gjakova, which have made progress since last year. The municipality with the lowest fulfillment of commitments to good governance is Ferizaj.

The mayor of Peja, Gazmend Muhaxheri, praised this publication, saying that his municipality is striving to maintain transparency and for this purpose they cooperate with donors and NGOs.

Deputy Mayor of Prishtina, Muhedin Nushi, said he agrees with the findings of the D+ report and that they are focused on transparency from their first mandate, as well digitalization and public consultation. “At the end of the year the mayor will come out with a report with his 100 promises,” he added.

The Deputy Mayor of Prizren, Memnuna Ajdini, said that her municipality made progress and that online platforms have improved the cooperation with the community, but cited as an issue the low participation of women, particularly in public debates.

Deputy Mayor of Mitrovica, Faruk Mujka, said that reports such as this help municipalities to improve their performances and in other areas as well, noting that their municipality received awards for transparency.

The Budget and Finance Director of the Municipality of Gjilan, Zijadin Maliqi, said he disagrees with one of the findings of the D+ report on budget transparency, saying that everything is published online. However, he acknowledged that they are not doing well in the area of procurement.

Fatos Axhemi, from Municipality of Gjakova, stated that they support D+ online platforms that contribute not only to transparency but much more than that.