SARAJEVO— There is a need for budgeting that develops the police instead of ‘life-supporting’, agreed police and civil society representatives in the debate on financial management organized by the Centre for Security Studies (CSS) on December 24, 2018.
A big majority of the budget for the police goes for salaries. In some cases over 85 percent, representatives of the police institutions in Bosnia and Herzegovina agreed. The rest of funds are spent on means for their work and renewal of equipment. Implementation of programme and gender-responsive is slow in all police institutions. In conclusion, there are very little or no funds for development.
The limited budgets, which for some institutions have not changed much in the last seven years, create further problems in the case of ad hoc circumstances such as migrant crisis. The public and politicians demand the police institutions respond. However, police do not have funds to redistribute it in order to answer adequately to the situation, police representative explained.
Independent state regulatory bodies externally audited on the annual basis most of the police institutions in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Nevertheless, there is a need for internal audits to widen their scope beyond financial checks and review the functioning of the institution in order to save funds, highlighted police representatives.
Public procurement is an area where funds can be misallocated or where corruption can occur. However, the representatives shared the opinion that much of the responsibilities on transparency is on the institutions. There is a fully functioning procurement portal where everything can be publicly available in one place and that can ensure full transparency.
Police representatives deemed the need to ensure harmonization of opinions and decisions by the Public Procurement Agency and the Procurement Review Body as necessary. They also stated that there is too much attention on the formality of unnecessary details, which makes them reject otherwise good offers, which in some cases are cheaper and of better quality.
The CSS organized consultations with representatives of police agencies in order to formulate recommendations for better financial management of the police.