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CEREMONY

The highlight of the 2012 award winning ceremony, hosted by the European Movement, certainly was the awarding of the prizes for the most transparent local administration. After careful consideration of all the candidates, the committee voted city of Vranje the most diligent and the one with the most transperent local administration. In addition, after the online voting by the townsfolk, Nis's Pantelej municipality managed to win the race with the Mediana municipality by a thread and was awarded with the prize for the best partnership practice between the local administration and the civil society. Important to point out is that the most prominent goal of the competition was to apply the 12 principles of the European Council's 'Good Government' charter, with special emphasis on the fourth principle 'Openness and Transparency', including the public campaign for its ratification and the devision of the national action plan for application of the charter for innovation and good government, for the purpose of common well being of the citizens themselves and the Republic of Serbia as well.

Nine months into the project, the results showed a significant improvement in the work of Serbia's Southeast local administrations (23%) with the tendency for further improvement which corroborates the claim that a decentralised staff training is but a must.

 

Transparent work of the local selfgovernment, openness towards citizens and sturdy cooperation with the civil sector is certainly one of the apsects of the EU that bears the utmost importance for the citizens in general. By introducining electronic administrations, info desks, service and call centres, direct links for notifying the authorities of corruption and quick reply systems, decision making in accordance with the official procedure and regulations rules and all information – except for those protected by the law, become publicly available. Information concerning decisions, enforcement of policies and results are made available to the public enabling it to efficiently follow and contribute to the general activity of the local authorities.

'It is always a great honor to get the recognition of the public for what you do. Local administration is certainly something thar requires a lot of effort given that there is always room for additional improvement and development. You must advance it constantly and, like any skilled and experienced manager, pay close attention to feedback you receive from the citizens.

I would also like to take this opportunity and express my gratitude to the European Movement for providing us with the crucial set of information and recommendations in the joint and highly innovative work approach', said Miroljub Stojčić, Mayor of the city of Vranje in his address upon receiving the official award.

Miroljub Stojčić, Mayor of the city of Vranje receiving the award from the president of the European Movement

'To be first, especially by vote of people, is something huge and it confirms that our activities and our cause was the righteous, and the right one.

I must emphasise that we have managed quite a lot on a micro level and, in return, our citizens have acknowledged this by showing their trust', said Slaviša Dinić, president of city municipality Pantelej.

Slaviša Dinić, president of Pantelej municipality

'This is the proper and the best way for us to learn something new and to, in case it is needed, even copy from the one holding far greater experience and proficiency in this respect. We have heard from the representative of the Council of Europe that this is a pioniring project in Serbia, and we are proud of it because together with the Eurpoean Movement we are putting good and useful things into practice, things bearing great significance for all of us', stated Dragoslav Ćirković (president of Medijana municipality).

Dragoslav Ćirković, president of Medijana municipality

The president of the European Movement pointed out that the main goal of the project was to encourage as well as facilitate the development and application of public, and transparent regulations in administrative activities, which represents a necessary foundation for social and regional development.

Mila Vujić, president of the European Movement

'This is an extremely good example of the great effort small local administrations have taken on their way to achieving their ultimate goals. Furthermore, what have local administrations which belong to the most impoverished ones in Serbia shown is that once one's mind is set, there is nothing one cannot acomplish. I must also express my great satisfaction with the highly prolific cooperation which gave birth to the overall feeling that only if we are united in our efforts, can we make things better. That which especially deserves praise is the fact that the local administrations have notably cooperated with one another as well. Due to this, what can be felt, here, today is an air of friendship and closeness, which allows me to adress each and every one of you in the following manner Dearest of firends, accept my most sincere congratulations on acomplished results', concluded the president of the European Movement - Mila Vujić.

The Council of Europe also points out that transparency is certainly one of the most crucial requirements local administrations in Serbia must meet in order to fulfill the European standards. 'The length European Movement has gone to is simply astonishing and praise worthy, and this, by all means, represents the essence of the citizen-oriented work, local administration included. The 12 principles in question are the foundation for actual progress and modernisation. And it is, rather, dreadful that Belgrade is quite unaware of how great the efforts you are making here are. What I would further add is that it is a great pleasure and honour to be here with you today, and would also like to take this opportunity to congratulate you on this pioneering project and offer you our full support in your future endeavours. Furthermore, it is a great pleasure to hear that the European Movement and the Standing Conference of Towns and Municipalities plan to extend their prolific cooperation and expand this project to Serbia in general. This is the most adequate and productive way to educate people and, by means of transparency approach, to inform the citizens in general of the activities of local self-government', stated the representative of the Council of Europe - Nadia Ćuk. .

Nadia Ćuk, Council of Europe

Đorđe Staničić from the Standing Conference of Towns and Municipalities emphasised that it was quite normal and expected that the SKGO finds itself in the centre of such a prolific cooperation, as well as that they have been attempting, for a number of years, to bring about changes through the joint activity with the local administrations. Furthermore, he places an emphasis on the fact that it is crucial not only to pass laws, but also by-laws which make the application of the former possible.

Đorđe Staničić, SKGO

 

Winner of the European Movement's Bill of Earnest Cooperation, Altruistic Commitment and Contribution to Development

  

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