What are the responsibilities of the next mayor of Obilic in the aftermath of October 22?
Obilic has become synonymous with pollution in Kosovo. Due to coal mining and the operation of two old power plants, the Municipality of Obilic has become highly polluted.
The municipality alone cannot deal with the troubles the energy industry brings to the area, but is expected to care for the well-being of 21 thousand residents. Obilic residents have various illnesses due to the operation of the power plants, especially respiratory illnesses.
So far, Obilic has been faced with all of the pollution caused by the Kosovo Energy Cooperation, KEK, but has benefitted from nothing in return. Last year, the Kosovo Assembly approved the law for this city, which is more advantageous for the inhabitants living close to the energy industry. In the future, Obilic will have a higher budget allocated for capital investments, which will better the lives of citizens. Twenty per cent of the mining rent KEK pays will return to Obilic, or between 4 and 6 million additional euros, which varies depending on amount of coal extraction.
As if the troubles of the Municipality that hosts KEK were not enough, the Prishtina region’s waste is discharged into the territory of Obilic, risking the occurrence of an ecological catastrophe in the landfill of Mirash. After many years of mismanagement, the largest landfill in Kosovo represents an environmental catastrophe, and may cause irreversible water pollution.
Obilic also has problems with illegal waste landfills, including the lack of irrigation systems and the presence of vastly polluted rivers. The Sitnica River is now transformed into sewage collector in a few cities.
The village with no convenience store
Although the municipality has reported that they are continuously trying to eradicate the presence of sewage and illegal waste landfills, KALLXO.com has identified waste landfills in many areas of this municipality. According to the municipality, Obilic has secured a contract for the cleaning of the Sitnica River, and is currently in the process of securing another one for the Llap River.
According to this municipality, Obilic faces sewage issues in a few parts of the municipality; according to Obilic, around 80 per cent of the territory is included in the sewage system.
Some villages have basic problems related to the operation of KEK. In the past, some neighborhoods of the Hade village were displaced. Considering that a huge number of families were displaced from Hade due to inhumane living conditions, this village is currently inhabited by a small number of people. These citizens have basic problems: they have no public transport or schools, and not even convenience stores. The village of Shipitullë is in the same situation, the residents of which are expected to movie soon, as well as the villages of Sibovc and Grabovc, which are affected by the mining.
In the villages of Sibovc, Shipitull, Hade, roads are damages, especially due to the heavy vehicles movement, while in some parts there are no sidewalks of public lighting.
Complaints about kindergartens and the need for shelter
This municipality also has issues in the education sector. During the past mandate, a school was constructed in the village of Lajthishtë, as well as three other school annexes in Kozaricë, Mazgit i Ulët and Plementin. Nine out of 21 schools work in two shifts, and 21 schools have no labs. Obilic has one public kindergarten. The other kindergarten of the municipality, although investments have been made, is closed and not functional.
The municipality of Obilic is also inhabited by families faced with shelter issues. According to the municipality of Obilic, there are 112 families that have submitted requests for shelter. During this mandate, the municipality of Obilic has built no collective living center, despite the huge number of requests. Based on the KALLXO.com investigation, three buildings of local communities have been built in Obilic during 2009-2011. So far, none of the buildings are functional. These buildings have only demolished since its construction.
The village of Plemetin is also inhabited by members of the Roma, Ashkali and Egyptian communities. Based on KALLXO.com’s research, a while ago, although the municipality has built a flat to the communities, the roof of the flat caught on fire. The municipality has not taken any measures regarding the previously mentioned case.