Montenegro Opposition Plan Response to Ruling Party Leaks

Opposition and civil society organizations met to discuss media leaks, which have cast a new light on the ruling party’s controversial tactics.The meeting took place on Friday on the initiative of Democratic Front, the largest opposition formation. Miodrag Lekic, leader of the front, said the meeting ended without concrete conclusions, but aimed to coordinate a response to media leaks about the controversial tactics employed by the ruling Democratic Party of Socialists, DPS.

He did not exclude – or encourage – a possible boycott of the upcoming presidential election, in which he will run against the current head of state and DPS candidate, Filip Vujanovic.

“We are all obliged to analyse all aspects and to determine… whether a boycott will be a gift to the ruling structures,” he warned.

The meeting followed Tuesday’s assessment of the state prosecutor, that leaked records of DPS revealed no evidence of criminal acts.

The affair started when the opposition daily, Dan, on February 15, published transcripts from two party sessions last year in which DPS officials appeared to promise jobs and loans to party supporters.

Dan later published a correspondence from 2006, which suggested that the head of a public enterprise had to seek approval from local DPS leaders in the city of Niksic to hire three people.

On Thursday, Dan also published a new transcript from the December 2012 session of the main board of the DPS, which it described as confirmation of a DPS plan to commit fraud in the next election.

At the session, Branimir Gvozdenovic, then political director of the party, analysed the result of the October 2012 general election, in which the DPS won 39 seats.

“If, in each of the six pollings station… we transformed each invalid ballot into a ballot for the DPS, we would win the 40th mandate”, Gvozdenovic suggested.

The DPS officials involved in the leaks have denied any wrongdoing, calling for the records of the sessions to be analysed more closely.

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