Former President Mesić Still Refusing to Move Out of His Abolished Office

Total Croatia News

Parliament abolished his office several months ago, but the former President has filed a complaint to the Constitutional Court.

The Constitutional Court held its first hearing about a complaint filed by former President Stjepan Mesić, who is still using his office in Grškovićeva Street in Zagreb, although four months ago Parliament adopted amendments to the Law on Rights of Former Presidents which abolished the office, reports on October 5, 2016.

Mesić has filed a constitutional complaint challenging the validity of the legal changes, and claims that he has not yet received a request by the State Office for State Property Management to hand over the building.

The decision about whether the amendments are unconstitutional will be made by 13 judges of the Constitutional Court very soon. “The former President has stated his reasons why he believes the amendments are unconstitutional, and the government has given its opinion why it considers them to be constitutional. And now the Constitutional Court should make a decision”, said President of the Constitutional Court Miroslav Šeparović.

The State Office for State Property Management claims that last week it sent an official request to Mesić to hand over the government-owned building. “We expected that former President Mesić would leave the building, but due to this constitutional complaint he has not yet moved out. We have not received a response to our letter”, said Tomislav Boban, head of the State Office for State Property Management.

Mesić said that he had not received any letter, and that the only decision he would respect is the one which will be made by the Constitutional Court.

According to the original Law on Rights of Former Presidents, after leaving office all former presidents had a right to a government-paid office. However, MOST insisted on changing the law, limiting that right just to the most recent former President, which meant that Mesić had lost the right to the office, as well as to an official car and driver. He has kept the right to have a government-provided security team. He claims that the law was adopted specifically as a retribution against him due to his political views. At recent parliamentary elections, Mesić was a candidate of the People’s Coalition, but has not received enough votes to enter Parliament.

The most recent former President, Ivo Josipović, has decided he will not exercise the right to have an office.


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