MANS forwarded “Gvozdenović“ case to APC


Today, NGO MANS submitted to the Agency for Prevention of Corruption of Montenegro an initiative to initiate proceedings against Branimir Gvozdenović, vice-president of the Parliament of Montenegro, regarding the origin of the money by which Gvozdenović financed the education of his children at prestigious universities in Milan and London.

Let us remind that yesterday MANS Investigative Centre revealed that the family Gvozdenović spent at least €370,000 on education and living expenses for Marko and Marija Gvozdenović, who were educated abroad. At the same time, during the studies (2007-2016), members of the Gvozdenović family earned a total of €330,000, which means that, even if they had absolutely no costs of living at the time, they would not be able to collect such money, and would still miss €40 thousand. Additionally, responding to a question by the journalist about the origin of money by which he financed the studies, Branimir Gvozdenović said that he “had help by the wider family”, which was not stated in his property records, nor any other sources of “help” such as loans or scholarships.

We demand that APC, as an umbrella anti-corruption institution in the state, use its clearly defined legal powers and determine the basis for obtaining money spent by the family of officials who, during the privatization of KAP, was the Minister for Economic Development, and then, during the most intensive period of illegal construction in Montenegro, was the competent Minister for Urbanism. Also, NGO MANS has filed several criminal charges in the last 15 years with the State Prosecutor’s Office in which Branimir Gvozdenović is suspected of abuse of the official position. All of these charges are still unresolved, or have been rejected in the meantime. All this opens up a large space to question the legitimacy of the origin of money paid for education abroad.

In the meantime, Montenegrin citizens have been witnessing for years the growing gap between them and the ruling elites and their families. Thus, while the average Montenegrin citizens encounter enormous problems to provide their children with quality education as the basis for a successful life, without even considering the option of studying at foreign universities, the children of Montenegrin officials are usually educated at the best European schools and faculties. Although the data on the costs of these studies are easily verifiable and accessible, Montenegrin institutions still do not show the will to compare it with official revenues, where simple math would show whether Montenegrin officials were indeed able to afford it to their children, as well as the origin of that money.

NGO MANS will continue to investigate property and income of state officials and related persons in the future as well, and we expect the same from the competent institutions which would finally send message to the Montenegrin public that the institutions are really doing their job.

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