I am contributing to de-escalation and not causing an additional crisis by escorting workers into the municipal building in Leposavic, claims the Deputy Minister of Communities and Returns, Radoica Radomirovic, despite the EU plan on de-escalation calling on the mayors to leave municipal buildings and perform their functions from alternative locations. Radomirovic, who was spotted leading a group of alleged new employees into this municipal building on several occasions, underlined that he is simply encouraging young people who have never had a chance for employment until now, due to the pressures they are facing from Srpska Lista and the former mayor.
He also accused SL of nepotism, corruption, and serious crime. That is why there are fewer protest participants, and an increase in employment in the new Kosovo administration in Leposavic, claims Radomirovic.
The mayor of Leposavic, Lulzim Hetemi, has been living in the municipal building for almost three months now, since he was forcibly installed there by Kosovo special forces, who removed municipal employees working within the Serbian system from the premises.
Although sharing detailed information about the alleged wrongdoings of Srpska Lista and the former mayor in Leposavic, Radomirovic says he does not know whether it is true that Hetemi, whom he has been visiting for the past few days, has not left this building for almost three months.
Last week’s incidents
We spoke with Radomirovic about last week’s incidents in Leposavic.
Kosovo Deputy Minister for Communities and Returns, Radoica Radomirovic, visited the mayor of Leposavic, Lulzim Hetemi, last week, who has been staying in the municipal building in this place since May 26. However, he was booed by a small group of gathered Serbs, including Todic and the vice-president of Srpska Lista, Slavko Simic.
“Servants of the invaders! Come with us, come here, shame on you! Boo! Shame on you, where are you going?!” – the gathered citizens shouted at Radomirovic, to which he replied – “Simic, aren’t you ashamed?” He then began filming the gathered group with his mobile phone, who told him that he should record them and send the video to Kurti.
V.N., one of the participants in the protest, was arrested the next day after Radomirovic filed a report, accusing V.N. of threatening him. V.N. was then sentenced to 48-hour detention, followed by a month-long detention.
In the meantime, a video showing Radomirovic hurling serious accusations at Todic, while filming him, has gone viral on social networks. He then repeated the same accusations in an interview with our portal.
Todic denied all allegations, emphasizing that Radomirovic „made up everything“, stating that the facts can be verified.
He accused Radomirovic of working for Albin Kurti to create discord among the Serbs, causing additional tension through the spread of disinformation.
Also, he reminds that Radomirovic was appointed to his new post only one day before the crisis in the north broke out.
The reason I go in front of the municipal building is to encourage new workers
Last week, Radomirovic came to the municipal building in Leposavic on several occasions in the morning, in order, according to the testimony of some residents, to introduce certain employees of this municipal administration.
Former mayor Todic confirmed for KoSSev that they are led into the municipal building by the Kosovo special forces calling out their names, raising a question about the legality of the process by which they were employed. He also emphasized that it is nothing but abuse of these people and their misfortunes.
Radomirovic confirmed that the reason he comes in front of the municipal building, however, is not to „lead people in“, but to „encourage“ new workers, i.e. those who were employed after the appointment of the new mayor.
„These are children who are 18-20 years old, who got a job in the municipality, I just want to encourage them, not to waver, not to be afraid of those criminals from Srpska Lista – Zoran Todic, Slavko Simic,“ he specified.
When asked to comment on his actions, given that the EU plan on de-escalation clearly calls on the mayors to leave municipal buildings and perform their functions from alternative locations, he replied that his moves do not in any way contribute to the escalation of the situation.
Moreover, I believe that due to the current situation on the ground, I thereby contribute to de-escalation
He pointed out that the number of protesters in front of the municipal building is actually decreasing, while more and more citizens are hired, or they will be in the future.
On Friday, there were five or six people from SL – Srpska Lista was reduced to five or six people
In his words, the largest party of Kosovo Serbs could potentially lead to a new escalation, while noting that they „don’t have the manpower“ or „the potential for escalation“.
The only ones shrieking in front of the municipality are Zoran Todic, Slavko Simic, Stevo Petronijevic and a few others
„On Friday, none of them wanted to approach the new workers, to tell them anything. The municipality of Leposavic is small, we all know each other, everyone has a relative or friend there,“ he said.
Imagine a situation where we have a 19-year-old girl who now works and lives in a family of six, a person with a severe disability, and someone telling her that she is a traitor. What can she betray?
New job openings and vacancies
Radomirovic states that since Serbs withdrew from the institutions, 35 new workers have been hired – mainly from the Serb community and three women from the Bosniak community.
„We only hired people who were unemployed, whose families were unemployed. We have five-member families where no one worked,“ he said.
He added that after leaving the institutions, around 40 workers of Albanian ethnicity continued to work in the municipal structures.
At the same time, Radomirovic announced that a competition will be opened by the Municipality of Leposavic, while several job vacancies will be called after November 15.
He underlined that they will fully comply with legal procedures during the hiring process.
As per the legal procedure, the ethnic structure of the municipality must be respected. It was respected when it comes to the Albanian community, but not for the Serbian and Bosniak communities, says this official of the Kosovo government.
He expects that, after the competition is closed, the number of employees in all institutions in the municipality to be around 500 – as many as were employed in all directorates before the withdrawal.
Radomirovic claims that people who already have a certain type of income will not be employed.
I can guarantee you that people who have other incomes will not be able to get a job
Director Simic did not resign, she was dismissed
Radomirovic also confirmed that one of the new employees was fired.
The media recently reported that Andjela Simic, who was appointed director of the municipal directorate for education in early July, had resigned.
However, Radomirovic denied these allegations. He claims that Simic was dismissed for not showing up to work.
„Andjela Simic was dismissed on Friday. The mayor dismissed her, as far as I know, because she didn’t show up for work for days,“ Radomirovic told KoSSev, stating that there is a mayor’s decision that confirms this.
However, he also alleged that it was Simic who told him that reportedly „someone is threatening her from Belgrade“ and that she is facing pressure.
„Allegedly, she was under pressure, that’s what she told me – that she was receiving calls from unknown numbers from Belgrade and threats. We invited her to come to work. She didn’t respond,“ added Radomirovic.
Unlike her, young people who have been employed recently do show up to work, he underlined.
No director resigned
Radomirovic also denied unofficial allegations published in the media that other directors of municipal directorates had resigned.
„It is a notorious lie of the terrorist organization – Srpska Lista and Zoran Todic. Absolutely no one resigned from the appointed Serb directors,“ he said.
Accusations against SL: Salaries, nepotism, sale of donations, fictitious employment…
Radomirovic made a series of shocking accusations against the highest representatives of the SL, including Zoran Todic, Jasmina Savic, Stevo Petronijevic, Rada Vukicevic, Slavko Simic.
This official alleged that they allegedly receive several salaries from Belgrade, announcing that he will very soon come into possession of the data on the exact number of people who are on the payroll of the Provisional Authority of the Municipality of Leposavic, yet who do not come to work.
„82 citizens of Belgrade on the payroll of the Municipality that they did not see, the mayor with 8 salaries.“
„Currently, I found lists that 82 people from Belgrade receive salaries, but they have never seen Leposavic Municipality. A lot of money is involved – the lowest salary is 82,000 dinars. At the same time, Todic has eight salaries. I just couldn’t believe that he and his wife are on various administrative boards, yet only have a high school diploma,“ he said.
Radomirovic also accused certain members of this party who are employed in the Provisional Authority of allegedly selling donations they had previously received from the Serbian government in the form of equipment.
He also claims that representatives of the Provisional Authority allegedly take part of the money whenever donations are given to citizens.
„They gave a farmer a tractor priced at 8,000 euros. However, the user of that tractor had to sign an invoice that the tractor cost 17,000 euros. So they took one tractor and more for themselves,“ he added.
On Civil Protection
In an interview for KoSSev, Radomirovic also stated that in the offices of the provisional authority in the municipality of Leposavic, he found evidence of the establishment of Civil Protection, which was allegedly signed by Zoran Todic.
„There is a decision – consent to establish, to take in a certain number of people, to deal with the safety of the Serbian community. Those documents were left by Todic,“ Radomirovic warned, stating that he had access to the documents in question.
„Zoran Todic left Civil Protection lists for the young men he had around him – those who had been criminalized – in the municipality, where it is written clearly and loudly that it is a decision for the formation of Civil Protection. He and his team are personally responsible for the fact that those guys escaped from Kosovo, so he no longer has any potential to escalate.“
„I was shocked at how many young men there are, some haven’t done anything, but some have,“ adds Radomirovic.
Revealing the names and surnames, Radomirovic claims that some of them, using the official vehicles of the Kosovo municipality of Leposavic, allegedly persecuted and harassed citizens.
„Zoran Todic will be held accountable before the law for allowing our citizens to fight in the official vehicles of the Municipality of Leposavic,“ added Radomirovic.
He also accuses Todic of allegedly organizing the arrest of citizens by Serbian authorities.
„He organized for our citizens to be illegally arrested, to be detained in Belgrade for a month or two, with false charges and then released,“ claims the deputy minister.
He could not confirm whether Hetemi is constantly staying in the municipal building
Radomirovic, who has so far visited the Leposavic municipality on several occasions, where, among other things, he met with the mayor, could not confirm for KoSSev the media reports that LulzimHetemi has not left the municipal building since the outbreak of the crisis at the end of May.
He says that this is a question for the mayor, and that he has not discussed the issue with him.
„Whether he was in the municipality tonight or at home, I really don’t know, that’s not a question for me, I really don’t know if he leaves the municipality in the afternoon or not,“ he said.
He says that V.N. threatened him
Radomirovic also addressed the arrest of the Serb from Lesak V. N., who was apprehended based on Radomirovic’s report for allegedly threatening him on Wednesday when he visited the municipality of Leposavic.
He also says that at that time he was not booed by ordinary citizens of Leposavic, but by the leaders of SL who „want to defend their eight to ten salaries“, as well as former municipal workers who, he claims, were threatened to come.
„I escorted some people who came to work in the municipality to encourage them, Zoran Todic, Slavko Simic, Stevan Petronijevic, Ivan Milojevic, Jasmina Savic and others greeted me, they started booing and yelling,“ he said, citing that V.N. was among them.
He claims that he knows the arrested person well, and that they are even friends, however:
„He insulted me, he cursed me – my mother, he threatened me,“ says Radomirovic, revealing that someone recorded the entire event.
Furthermore, he claims that he is not afraid of VN, but also that he „can’t go against the video that shows that he threatened him.“
He was one of the Serbs who protested in front of the municipal building in Leposavic on Wednesday against the arrival of Radomirovic.
Radoica Radomirovic was appointed as Kosovo’s Deputy Minister for Communities and Returns on May 25th, the day before Albanian mayors forcibly entered municipal buildings in the north.
He replaced Gazmend Salijevic who previously served as deputy minister of this ministry.
Radomirovic was also a candidate for councilor of the Kosovo Serb Party in the 2022 local elections in Leposavic.
However, this party, headed by Aleksandar Jablanovic, said that Radomirovic was never a member.
After these elections, as the party said at the time, they parted ways.
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