ZAGREB, February 25, 2020 – The government’s motion to relieve Dražen Jelenić of his duties as Chief State Prosecutor at his request will be on the parliament’s agenda on Wednesday.
Jelenić submitted his resignation after he himself confirmed that he was a Freemason and accused doctor Nikica Gabrić of having tried to influence a preliminary investigation into three reporters who allegedly blackmailed the ophthalmologist, demanding that he give them HRK 200,000 or they would publish photographs of a ceremony of the Masonic lodge to which Gabric belongs. As soon as Jelenić made that statement, Gabrić dismissed it as false.
However, the exchange of accusations between the two and the fact that Jelenić failed to inform the government that he was a Freemason when he was nominated for the post of Chief State Prosecutor prompted the authorities and politicians to criticise Jelenić’s behaviour.
After parliament dismisses Jelenić the State Prosecutorial Council will advertise a vacancy for that position and conduct the selection procedure for a new chief state attorney.
Prime Minister Andrej Plenković has said that the new chief state prosecutor’s name would be known by mid-April.
Jelenić’s deputy, Zlata Hrvoj Šipek, will be acting chief state attorney until a new one is selected.
According to legislation Jelenić could remain in the State Prosecutor’s Office (DORH) as a deputy to the chief state attorney however the opposition and some parties in the ruling coalition consider that to be contentious.
Parliament is expected to debate a total of nine bills this week and is expected to vote on about thirty bills that have been already been debated in parliament including a bill on the population census which was not put to the vote last Friday as ethnic minority MPs staged a walk-out when their amendments to the bill were not adopted.
Speaker Gordan Jandroković on Monday said that he expected an agreement with minority MPs to be reached in the next few days.
That task is being handled by Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) whip Branko Bačić and I expect that consultations will be held during the week and that we will continue ahead, Jandroković told reporters on Monday.
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