Whistleblowers Set up NGO to Strengthen Status, Protect Public Property

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Image: POMAK/Facebook
Image: POMAK/Facebook

The Pomak association will provide legal and psychological support to those who can face job loss and persecution after they decide to expose wrongdoings, it was said at the news conference in Zagreb.

The association’s leader, Adrijana Cvrtila, thanked media and journalists for the support.

She recalled obstacles she had been faced with after she exposed irregularities in the functioning of the City of Kutina administration. Cvrtila said that she had been fired from her job and so far nine defamation suits had been lodged against her.

Cvrtila holds a grudge against the judiciary over her treatment by judges.

Maja Đerek said that repressive actions must not be taken against whistleblowers and criticised the current legislation on this topic as shameful.

Đerek said that “one swallow does not make a spring, and there are now five of us, however, there will be soon an entire flock.”

“Today is the day for us to talk about togetherness and about every individual who wants to change the system,” she said adding that European institutions have warned Croatia on several occasions that the country does not have an efficient protection of whistleblowers.

“We will insist on amending the law so as to put an end to stigmatising those who expose wrongdoings”, she added.

Viktor Šimunić, the mayor of Oroslavje, is a vice-president of the association. He said that he had been supported by the general public when he had reported about murky dealings in that northern town. 

“Stop being silent, let us make a change,” Šimunić said.

Another vice-president of the association, Josip Vitez, said that “whistleblowers are usually removed from their positions in the business world and are being dragged through court proceedings which also affects their finances.”

Nada Ružić, a former internal auditor in the public sector, said she was shocked how much the system was corrupt.

The association’s secretary, Siniša Glavaš, wondered why citizens elected corrupt authorities and did not trust whistleblowers, and called on the public to provide assistance to the association.

For more, check out our politics section.


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