Coalition “Jednakost” (Equality) which gathers 22 civil society organizations, calls on BiH institutions, political parties, and representatives of international organizations, especially the EU, to return the discussion on implementing the Sejdić – Finci ruling to BiH Parliament.
Parliamentary Assembly in 2011 formed the Ad-hoc commission of both chambers of Parliament for implementing the ruling by the European Court of Human Rights in the Sejdić-Finci case. This commission is comprised of members of House of Representatives and delegates of the House of peoples from a coalition of political parties and members of the opposition. The Ad-hoc commission is an all-encompassing body which gathers all relevant political party representatives on state level.
Questions surrounding constitutional reform are questions of interest for the entire BiH society, not only political party bosses included in the coalition. The process of constitutional reform should include all other social actors, including political parties, organizations of civil society, academic community, expert groups, syndicates, and associations of national minorities as well as other actors.
The discussion on implementing the Sejdić-Finci ruling has been held behind closed doors for the last three years in offices of political parties, cafes, and restaurants instead of being held in BiH institutions. This sort of discussion has not led BiH closer to an adequate solution in implementing the ruling, and public announcement by political party officials revolve around questions of electing “legitimate” representatives of constitutional peoples or solutions for electing the Croat member of the BiH Presidency. The Sejdić-Finci ruling does not in any way include the issue of electing representatives of constitutional peoples, instead the ruling is concerned with discrimination of “Others” in state institutions. Such actions of political parties, as well as passive institutions which have completely allocated this process outside of institutions, allow for new law suits in Strasbourg against BiH, losing of European Council membership, and de facto international isolation if the general elections in 2014 are not recognized as legitimate due to discriminatory measures.
Therefore we call upon the BiH Parliamentary assembly to convene a session of the Ad-hoc commission for implementing the Sejdić-Finci ruling. We also call upon members of the Commission to be accountable in solving this issue in order to avoid the negative consequences which await BiH if the ruling is not adequately implemented. Therefore it is of vital importance that the Commission includes and begins consultations with all actors in BiH society. Only in this way can a solution be found for the ruling that will be satisfactory to the European Court of Human Rights and have democratic legitimacy.