Activists across Bosnia and Herzegovina marked International Day of Action for Rivers with a clear message to all relevant institutions and decision-makers that rivers are the common good of all citizens, and that they should be accessible and used in the interest of citizens, not for the benefit and interest of individuals.
A joint statement by BiH activists on the occasion of International Day of Action for Rivers states that informal groups of citizens, as well as citizens’ associations throughout BiH, have been fighting for years against irregular and unlawful actions in the case of construction of mini-hydropower plants on rivers, which are the country’s natural treasure.
“Procedural errors, irregularities, illegal actions, illegal works and violations of the law were recorded in cases of construction of small hydropower plants on the rivers Bjelava, Doljanka, Kasindol River, Kruščica, Neretvica, Rzava, Buna River canals, etc. In addition, such illegal activities have been registered in cases of illegal extraction of gravel from the Bosna River as well as the construction of walls on the Drina River,” it is stated in the reaction today.
They added that, during the fight, activists for the protection of rivers constantly encounter the decisions of the competent institutions at the local, the FBiH, the RS, and the state level, which protect the interests of individuals, investors, and not the interests of BiH citizens.
All this, they warn, leads to the destruction of the rivers and water resources, thus endangering the basic human rights of all BiH citizens.
“In this way of making decisions, rivers in BiH will be destroyed, and only individuals will enjoy the profit produced from the construction and usage of small hydropower plants, extraction of gravel or construction of walls,” the activists underlined.
The joint statement was issued by: Eco Association ‘Majski cvijet’, UG Bjelava, UG Neretvica – ‘Let me flow’, UG ‘Za Doljanku’, NGG “Hrabre žene Kruščice”, NGG “Spasimo Drinu”, NGG “STOP construction of SHPP on the Kasindol River”, NGG ” Let’s defend the rivers of Višegrad “, NGG “Stop unlafwul exploitation of minerals from the riverbed of Bosna”, NGG” Let’s stop unlawful exploitation of gravel in Maglaj “.