Christian Schmidt, the international community's High Representative in Bosnia and Herzegovina, has used the Bonn powers for the second time after he took office in August 2021, this time to impose a decision on financing the 2022 general elections.
Addressing the media on Tuesday, Schmidt said he passed the decision on allocating the amount of 12.5 million Bosnian marks (approx 6.3 million euro) to the Central Election Commission (CEC) to organise the vote scheduled for October 2, 2022.
He said that the decision passed by the state ministers on Monday regarding the financing of the elections was a step towards a good direction but it came late.
“With this decision, I order the following, and that is that the Central Election Commission will receive the amount of 12.5 million marks, which was initially determined for the preparation and organising of the elections. This does not rule out further allocations. This decision shall enter into force as soon as it is published on the OHR website,” Schmidt said through a translator, after he used the special powers which allow him as the High Representative to impose decisions and dismiss officials instead of the Bosnian authorities.
Schmidt noted that his decision “legally changes the decision of the Council of Ministers and allocates funds for the CEC, and it ensures permanent financing of elections when the authorities are unable to do so.”
“I am not happy that I had to make this decision,” said the international envoy.
Schmidt previously used the Bonn powers to suspend a law in Bosnia’ Republika Srpska entity.