Milatović: The decision to shorten the mandate of the councilors of the Šavnik Municipal Council does not provide a valid legal basis for calling elections

"The regulations do not recognize the possibility of 'shortening the mandate of councilors', but the legal institute of shortening the mandate of the municipal assembly through systemic legal solutions refers to the assembly as a collective body, and not to the councilors who make it up," Milatović said.

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Milatović, Photo: Boris Pejović
Milatović, Photo: Boris Pejović
Disclaimer: The translations are mostly done through AI translator and might not be 100% accurate.

The decision to shorten the mandate of the councilors of the Municipal Assembly (SO) of Savnik does not provide a valid legal basis for making the decision to call for elections, announced the President of Montenegro, Jakov Milatović.

"Regarding the newly created situation in the municipality of Šavnik, looking at the 'Decision on shortening the mandate of the councilors of the Municipality of Šavnik', which was submitted to the President of Montenegro, it is evident that it does not provide a valid legal basis for making a decision on calling elections. Namely, the provisions of the Law on Local self-government, it is prescribed that the municipal assembly can make a decision to shorten the mandate of the assembly, while the content of the adopted decision governs the shortening of the mandate of councilors. The regulations do not recognize the possibility of 'shortening the mandate of councilors', but the legal institute of shortening the mandate of the municipal assembly through systemic legal solutions refers to the assembly as collective body, not the councilors who make it up," Milatović pointed out in the announcement.

He added that the authority of the President of the State to call elections can be based solely on the previously adopted decision to shorten the mandate of the Assembly, which, as he said, was not done in the specific situation.

"Additionally, the duration of the mandate of councilors is regulated by the Law on the Election of Councilors and Members of Parliament, and it is not possible to regulate the issue in question in a different way by the decision of the Municipal Assembly. When it comes to the duration of the mandate of the Municipal Assembly, the Law on Local Self-Government clearly prescribes the duration of the mandate of four years. The law prescribes and that the mandate may end before the end of the term for which the municipal assembly was elected, by dissolving or shortening the mandate of the assembly. Furthermore, the Law stipulates that in the event of the end of the mandate of the assembly before the end of the term for which it was elected, the President of Montenegro calls for elections on the day following the entry into office the force of the decision to dissolve, or shorten the mandate of the assembly. In practically the same way, the Law on the Election of Councilors and Members of Parliament stipulates that the President calls for elections in the event of the termination of the mandate of the municipal assembly, before the end of the term for which it was elected," said Milatović.

He said that following both systemic laws, the president's decision to call elections for councilors of the new convocation, based on the shortening of the mandate of the current assembly, can only result from the decision to shorten the mandate of the assembly that was made during its legal four-year mandate.

"We remind you that the mandate of the current convocation of the Šavnik Municipal Assembly expired in 2022, and that in the specific situation it is not possible to apply the institute of shortening the mandate of the municipal assembly. From the position of the President of Montenegro, I appeal to the competent institutions to take all necessary measures and actions, so that started the election process in Šavnik, finally ended, and this municipality stopped being a hostage of political fights," concluded Milatović.

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