Writes: Vladimir Kovačević

“What do you have to do with the van and the purchase of the van,” SNSD councillor in the Kupres municipal assembly in Republika Srpska, Dušan Knežić, asked our journalist during a telephone conversation.

As a councillor, Knežić insisted on buying a used van to transport students from this small peripheral municipality to Šipovo. The majority led by the SNSD in this municipality supported the initiative to buy a used van for transporting children in February 2021, and the proposal that the municipality buy a new van with a guarantee for a little more money was rejected.

Knežić, for Gerila.info, says that the used van was paid around 40,000 KM with registration and that it was not possible to find a better solution for that money.

The used van that the municipality of Kupres in RS bought for 33,000 KM without VAT, photo Gerila.info

“There was no better option for that amount of money.” This one turned out to be very good “, says the head of the Club of SNSD councillors in this small municipality. Only one bidder applied for the competition announced by the municipality, from which a used Mercedes van was bought.

The proposal for the municipality to buy a new van instead of the used one for slightly more money was given to the municipal assembly by the PDP councillor, Milan Milišić.

“I thought it was better for that money to buy a new van with guarantees and which will last for ten years without any problems, but most of them did not listen to such a proposal,” Milišić told Gerila.Info.

The office of the mayor of this municipality did not answer our questions regarding the purchase of a van to transport children to school in Šipovo, but also some questions regarding other purchases, such as the purchase of a dump truck from the company Javor komerc, in 2013, for 23 000 KM. The dump truck was parked in the parking lot near the municipal building, together with several other unregistered vehicles in visibly poor condition.

Truck in the parking lot in front of the Kupres municipality building in Republika Srpska, photo Gerila info

The mayor Gojko Šerbez (SNSD) did not want to talk about the realized public procurements in his municipality, in a conversation with the journalist of Gerila.Info.

“I don’t want to talk about anything over the phone,” Gojko Šerbez told us briefly.

In the subsequent answer to our questions from the municipality of Kupres in the Republic of Srpska, they explain that they do not understand to whom the questions were addressed.

“Your request that you sent us is untidy and it is not stated anywhere who it is intended for, so we are not obliged to submit an answer,” reads the e-mail signed by the mayor, Gojko Šerbez.

The explanation that it is clear that the questions were sent to the municipality of Kupres in RS, which realized the mentioned public procurements, remained without reaction.

The used van for passenger transport in the municipality of Kupres RS, was procured after the announced public procurement in January 2021, and the tender documentation states that the estimated value of the contract is 33,000 KM without VAT. Interestingly, it is not possible to find the Decision on the award of the contract or information on when the passenger van was purchased. Unofficially, the only bidder was the transport agency “Intravel”, from which the van was eventually bought.

At the end of last year, the municipality of Kupres in RS announced a public call for the purchase of a work-combined machine, an excavator. The estimated value of the contract in the tender documentation was 196,500 KM. The invitation for public procurement was published on November 29, 2021, and the deadline for submitting bids was December 19 of that year, about twenty days later. The opening of the received bids was scheduled for December 29 last year. Everything was finished in a month.

Excavator parked in front of the Kupres municipality building in Republika Srpska, photo Gerila.info

Criteria for selection of bidders was the lowest price and interestingly the contract for the purchase of excavators was concluded on January 26, 2022, with TERRA BiH d.o.o. from Hadžići for the amount in KM identical to that stated in the public invitation as the estimated value of the contract, 196,500 KM. We remind you that the criterion for selecting the bidder was the lowest price, so it is almost unbelievable that the excavator was bought for the amount stated in the tender documentation. TERRA BiH was also the only bidder in the tender.

Without success, we asked the municipality for answers to the questions with what money the Hunting Lodge was built in that municipality and with what money the road to that hunting lodge was built.

An environmental association founded in the municipality of Kupres in the Republika Srpska has submitted an initiative to build a congress hall in the municipality with funds from a World Bank donation. The municipal assembly approved the initiative, and 33,000 euros from the World Bank were directed to the construction of the congress hall. Part of the funds for the construction of the congress hall was redirected by the municipality from the funds paid by the Government of the Republika Srpska to the municipality, which were intended to enable the survival of the population in this municipality.

Hunting house in the municipality of Kupres in the Republic of Srpska, photo Gerila.info

Instead of a congress hall, a Hunting House was eventually built. At the head of the association that submitted the initiative for the construction of the congress hall is Risto Milišić, the former SNSD president of the assembly of the municipality of Kupres in RS. Milišić claims for Gerila.Info that no hunting lodge was built, but an ecological house.

“The municipality has nothing to do with that, it was the funds of the World Bank and there were even some of our own funds,” Milišić said briefly.

Risto Milišić, by the way, was the president of the assembly of the municipality of Kupres in RS until December 2020, i.e. until the last local elections in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Jovana Marić, deputy mayor, confirmed earlier in a statement for certain media that a hunting lodge was built in the municipality, and not an ecological house, speaking about the tourist potential of this small municipality. She mentioned the newly built hunting lodge as one of the tourist potentials of this municipality.

GERILA.info

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