SIPA Police completes Checks on Candidates for Bosnia’s Security Minister

The State Investigation and Protection Agency (SIPA) has completed checks on candidates for Bosnia and Herzegovina’s security minister.

As part of the checks that began on June 18th, SIPA police officers checked the accuracy of the information provided by Selmo Cikotic, the candidate for minister, on the Statement Form of the BiH Central Election Commission. The results of the inspections will be submitted today to the Chairman of the Council of Ministers of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Zoran Tegeltija.

The Collegium of the Party of Democratic Action (SDA) again urged the Council of Ministers of Bosnia and Herzegovina to promptly send the draft budget of the state budget to the parliamentary procedure with secured funds for municipal elections and remediation of the consequences of the coronavirus epidemic.

“Considering that the SDA submitted the official proposal of the candidate for the Minister of Security of BiH in a timely manner, we call on the Chairman of the Council of Ministers of BiH Zoran Tegeltija to urgently submit the proposal for appointing Selmo Cikotic as the Minister of Security, in order to enable efficient functioning of the CoM.

The candidacy of Selmo Cikotic (SDA party) for the new Minister of Security of Bosnia and Herzegovina, who should succeed Fahrudin Radoncic (SBB party) in this position, provoked the first reactions of SNSD and HDZ and HNS, Klix.ba news portal reports.

Both claim that the appointment of Cikotic, whose candidacy was officially submitted to the chairman of the Council of Ministers of BiH, Zoran Tegeltija (SNSD), will not go so smoothly.

While the leader of the SNSD, Milorad Dodik, claims that Cikotic “recently announced a new collection which is an author in which the Serbian people are very badly connoted and assessed as aggressive”, the HNS led by Dragan Covic tells him to say ” the real truth about the fate of the captured and killed captured Croats of Bugojno”.

While these disputes are obviously happening due to certain unsettled accounts at the state level on the SNSD-SDA-HDZ route, it should be reminded that Selmo Cikotic obviously did not bother the parties led by Dodik and Covic in 2007. At that time, all SNSD and HDZ deputies in the House of Representatives of the BiH Parliament voted for Cikotic as a member of the Bosnian Council of Ministers, more precisely as the Minister of Defense.

Thus, in February 2007, Cikotic became a member of the Council of Ministers led by Nikola Spiric (SNSD). When it comes to SNSD staff, Sredoje Novic and Slobodan Puhalac were also in that Council of Ministers, and together with Cikotic, Dragan Vrankic and Barisa Colak were among HDZ staff in the Council of Ministers, as well as Bozo Ljubic, who is today President of the Main Council of the HNS.

It is worth recalling that at that time the HDZ committee in Bugojno disputed Cikotic’s appointment, and after that they swallowed the “bitter pill”, ie after learning that he had passed the votes of Croats in the BiH Parliament.

“The most painful thing is that Croatian MPs from all parties with a Croatian sign also voted in a ‘package’ for Selmo Cikotic.  We, the Croats from Bugojno, also voted for these MPs, so their position in Parliament is a salt to the wound for all of us.” , said the Bugojno HDZ at that time.

Selmo Cikotić is a Bosnian politician, member of the Party of Democratic Action (SDA) and former Army officer. He was the second Minister of Defence, a post he was appointed to in February 2007, but unable to take up officially until 22 April 2007, when a ban on former army officers performing defence-related civilian duties expired. His term as Minister ended on 10 February 2012.

In February 1993, he was made commander of operational group Zapad of the 3rd Corps of the Army of the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina in Bugojno.

Cikotić served as the military attaché at the embassy of Bosnia and Herzegovina to the United States in Washington, D.C. from December 1994 to 1997. As Brigadier General he was enrolled at the U.S. Army’s Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth in June 1997, before being expelled as a result of unconfirmed accusations made by Croatian officials that he commanded soldiers who tortured and killed people in and around Bugojno.[2]

From 2000 to 2004, he was the Commander of the 1st Corps of the Federation Army, and from 2004 to 2007 CEO of OKI in Sarajevo.

In June 2007, he jointly attended a Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council at the NATO headquarters in Brussels with the Serbian defence minister Dragan Šutanovac, together they expressed their governments’ wish to join NATO as soon as possible.

In March 2008 he led a five member delegation to Pakistan, to discuss “bilateral cooperation between the two Muslim countries”.

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