On 22 March 2016 at the General Assembly of the International Coordinating Committee of National Institutions for the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights (ICC) in Geneva Ombudsman Saša Janković received a certificate of re-accreditation in the highest A status as a National institution for the promotion and protection of human rights, for the period from 2015 to 2020.
It was the first time The United Nations first accredited an ombudsman as a National Institution for the Protection and Promotion of Human Rights with the highest "A" status in 2010 for a five-year period.
The International Coordinating Committee brings together national institutions for the promotion and protection of human rights recognized by the UN and accredits them according to the compatibility of work and responsibilities of human rights institutions in accordance with the Paris Principles.

Thursday, 17 December 2015

The Protector of Citizens welcomes the resolution of the Government of Serbia which, after one and a half years, accepted his recommendation to stop the incorrect and unlawful collection of the solidarity tax and to refund any amounts already collected. The Ombudsman regrets that this had not been done earlier to avoid the additional financial burden for the citizens.

Acting on the complaints filed by dozens of women and organisations, the Protector of Citizens investigated the operations of the Tax Administration of the Ministry of Finance in March 2014 and found the solidarity tax was not levied only on monthly salaries higher than RSD 60,000, as was required by the statute, but also on multiple monthly salaries which were paid cumulatively to pregnant women in arrears.

The Protector of Citizens immediately recommended that the Ministry of Finance stop the unlawful and incorrect levying of the solidarity tax in those instances and refund any amounts unlawfully assessed and collected, but the Ministry of Finance refused to comply with those recommendations even after three meetings between the Minister of Finance and the Protector of Citizens and persisted in its incorrect application of the law. It was only after yesterday’s meeting between the Protector of Citizens and the Prime Minister in which the two discussed this matter that the Government passed a resolution which ordered the Ministry of Finance to remedy this error.

Ombudsman Saša Janković, professor Vesna Rakić – Vodinelić, and Commissioner for Information of Public Importance and Personal Data Protection Rodoljub Šabić were awarded the “Dragoljub Stošić” Civil Courage Charter for 2015 today.
The decision on the winners was made unanimously by a four-member jury consisting of Olgica Batić, Ratko Božović, Predrag Koraksić and Danilo Šuković, stating in the explanation that it was about people who had dedicated their lives to common good - the fight for society and not for themselves.
As a member of the jury Danilo Šuković said at the award ceremony that they fought for morality, truth and social justice and against immorality, lies, and corruption.
As for Ombudsman Saša Janković, the explanation stated that he had borne a huge burden while serving as Ombudsman - defending those whose rights and dignity was threatened. In his work, he had been the victim of a political and media lynching and arrogance of those in power, due to disclosing unpleasant facts, the jury’s statement said.

The PoC has identified a series of irregularities in the county prisons and penitentiary-correctional institutions related to living conditions of prisoners. The control conducted in the Penitentiary-Correctional Institute (PCI) in Niš has shown that the bathrooms in the Pavilion "C" are ruined, humid, with inadequate sanitary installations and insufficient privacy. The toilets and bathrooms in the closed wards of the District Prison in Novi Sad and the District Prison in Leskovac are also ruined, humid and without sufficient privacy.

Based on the state established during the control, the PoC referred the recommendations requiring from the county prison and penitentiary-correctional institutions to renovate toilets and bathrooms and provide clean and dry rooms with appropriate sanitation, in which privacy is ensured.

The control carried out by the PoC in the PCI Požarevac-Zabela showed the violation of detainees’ rights to health care in the Pavilion VII, because their contact with a physician is rendered difficult, which prevents them from accessing timely medical exams and getting adequate treatment.

The Recommendation given by the PoC after completed control stated that a medical doctor should once a month visit all persons deprived of liberty accommodated in the Pavilion VII, enter each room and bedroom and in a conversation with detainees determine whether they need medical examination or not.

Ombudsman Saša Janković and actor Nikola Kojo are this year's Ambassadors of the "Liceulice", it was announced today at a ceremony organized to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the association. Explaining their decision, the representatives of the association have pointed out that Janković and Kojo had supported current activities of the "Liceulice" magazine, particularly in protecting the rights of marginalized and stigmatized groups and individuals in our society.
The most successful vendors of the "Liceulice" magazine were also awarded at the celebration today. The magazine is published once every two months in 5000 copies and sold in the streets and public places through a specially organized network of street vendors.
Half of proceeds from the sale of each copy go to the vendors, while the other half is used to produce the following issues, for brand development, additional work on the integration of other vendors and various "Liceulice” philanthropic programs.

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