Members of parliament said on Wednesday that the Office of the Chief State Prosecutor (DORH) should investigate the serious allegations of corruption made by Zdravko Mamic, sentenced to six-and-a-half years in prison, against Supreme Court President Djuro Sessa and Osijek judges.
Branko Bacic of the Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) said that these were extremely serious allegations.
“It must be taken into account that they were made by a convicted person, but regardless of that, all those allegations must be thoroughly examined,” he told reporters in the parliament, stressing that DORH is an independent body and the parliament cannot influence the dynamic of the process of examining such allegations.
Since these are accusations against the highest judicial officials, the Croatian public wants to know how justified or unjustified “such terrible allegations” are, Bacic said, adding that without wishing to exert any pressure, he expected DORH to report to the public on the results of the investigation.
He added that his party was committed to making the work of the Croatian judiciary as transparent as possible and to improving the work of Croatian courts.
Arsen Bauk of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) said that Mamic’s allegations against certain judicial officials deserved to be investigated so that the truth could be established.
“That would definitely increase confidence in the judiciary if these allegations are removed or, in case they are confirmed, if the officials are then sanctioned,” he said.
He said that it would have been better for the society if a commission of inquiry had started working, noting that the opposition’s motion for the establishment of such a commission was not accepted by the parliamentary majority.
He said that he believed that DORH would establish the truth and called for sessions of the State Judicial Council to be held in the parliament and be open in future.
Sandra Bencic of the We Can! political platform thinks that it is devastating for the Croatian judiciary and society that someone convicted as a criminal could make allegations the way Mamic has done, claiming he can prove that he has bribed the very top of the judiciary.
Bencic considers that DORH should absolutely investigate Mamic’s allegations, adding that this does not mean what he said is true, but that state institutions should react when the top of any branch of government is accused of serious corruption.
MP Dalija Oreskovic (Centre party) said that Mamic’s allegations of corrupt judges could not remain uninvestigated and unpunished because citizens had the right to a fair judiciary.
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