Finances of Political Parties

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All political parties are obliged to give accountability towards their income, the origin of their money and their spending. 

All political parties had to declare their finance reports in the Central Election Commission by March 31, 2013. In Kosovo, there are 56 political parties registered and obliged to report their finances in CEC. “Life in Kosovo” has analyzed the finance reports of the biggest five political parties in Kosovo. The main findings from these analysis were: concealment of documents in relation to the political parties, not filing the financiers and the refusal of the financial officials to declare their finances.

Miradije Mavriqi, of the CEC, declared that the financial reports of the political parties need to get audited first; she explains that the reports from the year 2012 are not yet audited since the political parties had the deadline to submit the reports until March 2013. Once the auditor has the data, it audits and sees whether anything is missing; afterwards it sends a notification to the political parties asking for the additional documents missing and they have five days to complete the required documents.

In the website of CEC, the annual financial reports, not the audited reports, are only from the year 2011. According to Mavriqi, there is a law that states that the reports should be audited then posted in the website; however, the reports from the year 2011 were posted even though they were not audited.

Leon Malazogu, D4D – a NGO that deals with the elections, said that: “Finances of political parties are poorly managed by the law; there are no specific requests mentioned in the law.” Additionally, he said that CEC staff consists of members of political parties and expecting political parties to fine themselves is ridiculous. There is no detailed report to show how the public money is spent, and the documents provided are not enough to provide any analysis upon the spending.

Basri Musmurati, of PDK, claimed that his party is transparent and is ready to provide financial records to NGOs and other organisations.  However, he acknowledged that there might be shortcomings in the documentation since there are delays and other internal problems related to the finances.

The law states that in every political party the head and another responsible person should have exact data for the finances. Flutura Kusari, Legal Advisor at BIRN, claimed that GazetaJNK has tried numerous times to contact the responsible person for finances in PDK but never received an answer.

LDK has declared only two donors even though it is one of the biggest parties in Kosovo. In relation to this, Lutfi Zharku – LDK, said that they do have only two donors and they do not need for any additional donor since they have the public money, 900,000 euros, which is sufficient enough to cover their spending and projects relating Kosovo.

Haki Shatri, AAK, also claimed that they only have two donors and emphasizes that the public money is enough for their activities. He encourages the civil society to out more emphasis in this issue since there is lack of rule of law. He also adds that the public money that was given to the Serbian party, a small party in Kosovo related to these three parties, has never claimed their spending.

In conclusion, each amount of money received and spent from the public parties should be declared and transparent to the public. There are many inconveniences in the finances of the public parties. On one hand, the representatives of the political parties claim that they are very transparent and organized in the way they spend the money. CEC claims that there is no publishing of the reports since they have lack of auditing personnel; the reports should be audited first and then published. On the other hand, the civil society and BIRN claim that there is lack of transparency and the public money is not spent in the best way.