02/12/1999 OHR Sarajevo

Suspension of Mr Dzevad Mlaco

The High Representative today, Friday 12 February, suspended Mr Dzevad Mlaco from the office of Mayor of Bugojno, and all other elected offices in that municipality, until further notice.

The decision was taken as a result of a persistent pattern of non-compliance with the letter and spirit of the Dayton Peace Agreement, culminating in his recent attack in the media on the Ombudsman’s Office through the person of Ombudsperson Branka Raguz, which the High Representative considers to have been the final straw.

The High Representative expects the municipal council to appoint an acting mayor at the earliest opportunity, so that there is as little interruption as possible to the process of peace implementation.

The suspension decision will be reviewed after 30 March. Mr Mlaco has been warned that his behaviour in the interim will be subject to the closest scrutiny. Should he continue to make inflammatory statements undermining the institution of the Ombudsmen, he must face permanent dismissal from office.