Joomla 3.2 Template by Justhost Complaints
Local transparency index - LTI
Business Integrity Country Agenda – BICA Assessment Report Serbia
Anti-corruption priorities for Parliament and Government for 2020-2024
Advocacy and Legal Advice Centres - ALAC

The costs of the Belgrade local election campaign - what is shown and what is missing

Although there were 14 election lists in the Belgrade local elections, and the deadline for submitting the final financial reports expired six days ago, only nine lists have been published so far. According to the information published on the Agency for the Prevention of Corruption website, the report on the financing of the Belgrade campaign has not yet been submitted by the group of citizens "MI – Glas iz naroda - Aleksandar Jerković", which received RSD 5,260,805.63 from the City's budget for campaign financing. Reports are also missing for four lists that did not pass the census, nor were they entitled to budget funding - "Da se vojska na Kosovo vrati – Miša Vacić ", Stranka pravde i pomirenja (SPP), grupa građana "Ćale ovo je za tebe "i Čedomir Jovanović – mora drugačije. In these cases, we can talk about persistence in violating legal obligations because three of the five electoral lists mentioned did not submit preliminary financial reports either. In contrast, "MI – Glas iz naroda - Aleksandar Jerković" and SPP submitted preliminary reports that did not even contain signature verification costs. However, there was an obligation to show all costs incurred up to and including December 2, 2023.

Regarding the content of the reports, by far the most significant expenditure was reported by the SNS list, which, in addition to the RSD 26 million budget subsidies for the elections, used over RSD 90 million transferred from the party's permanent account for this campaign. The largest expenses are represented by "leased TV slots" broadcast on TV Pink (RSD 48 million) and Superstar TV (RSD 4.1 million). At the same time, it remains unclear how these costs were incurred since media rules for a long time do not recognize the possibility of paid promotion that would last longer than 12 minutes within a full hour. In addition to the costs of advertising on these media, SNS also showed the payment of RSD 18.5 million to a marketing agency for "broadcasting advertising material on TV stations" without specifying which television stations are included.

The list "Srbija portiv nasilja" (Serbia against violence) report shows costs of RSD 23.3 million, of which 99% comes from the City's budget. In addition to the budget, this list also used close to RSD 2 million in funds from the party's permanent account, and the total reported cost is RSD 6.7 million. The NADA coalition also invested RSD 4.2 million from the party's permanent account in the campaign, and the total reported expenses are close to RSD 10 million, the most significant part of which relates to billboards.

Although Belgrade was the main scene of confrontation in the December elections, the reported campaign expenses for the capital are relatively modest because the largest part of these expenses will be attributed to the campaign for the parliamentary elections. The deadline for their submission is February 12, 2024. Transparency Serbia previously pointed to significant deficiencies in the preliminary financial reports for the parliamentary elections.