Dragana Rakić, DS deputy president and Dveri leader Boško Obradović spoke for Danas about the arguments why a referendum should be held to change the Constitution in the part related to justice scheduled for January 16, why it should be boycotted and what the opposition’s victory would be on Sunday.
TODAY: * It is not very clear what the DS is calling on its members and supporters on January 16 – to come out or to boycott the referendum?
Dragana Rakić: We have said many times, I will repeat now: we are not going to the referendum for at least four reasons: because the proposed changes to the Constitution did not provide a framework for an independent judiciary and an independent prosecutor’s office; because the way to change the Constitution is undemocratic: without political, professional and the widest public debate and without a broad consensus, and because it was announced by an illegitimate one-party assembly. Because the citizens are not aware of what is actually being voted on in the referendum. Aleksandar Vučić and this government violate the Constitution every day, so its change is meaningless as long as we have such a government.
TODAY: * Why should we go to the referendum on January 16?
Bosko Obradovic: Because by boycotting the referendum, we surrender without a fight and make it easier for the ruling regime to change the Constitution. Considering that the census was abolished, according to which it was necessary for at least half of the total number of voters to go to the referendum in order to succeed, nothing was gained by not going out, but only to Vučić’s advantage. We should go to the referendum on Sunday because the Serbian Constitution is not for sale, because we do not want our judiciary to be ruled by foreigners and because we are against corrupt government and corrupt judiciary electing judges and prosecutors together in the future. This should remain in the hands of the elected members of the National Assembly, or the election of judges and prosecutors should be left directly to the people in the elections. Such a reform of the judiciary as proposed by the current government does not exist anywhere in Europe, and we do not see why the existing Constitution would be changed and an experimental colony would be established in Serbia.
TODAY: * Why is a boycott a good political move?
Dragana Rakić: Because the game with the referendum is set in such a way that by going to the referendum, this government certainly declares its victory: if you go out and vote “yes” then you vote for cosmetic changes that will not make our judiciary independent and free, and Vucic will present this as your victory, because you voted for his proposal. If you go to the referendum and vote “against”, then you vote to keep everything as it is, because you are satisfied with the existing solutions in the field of justice and you think that the judiciary and the prosecutor’s office are working well. Neither is good for the citizens. The only thing that does not suit the government is not to go to such a referendum, but to a referendum that will be called by a legitimate assembly, with a wide debate and the widest possible consensus. The misconception is that going to the referendum and rounding off the “no” vote against Vučić. It is just a vote against cosmetic changes to the Constitution and nothing more. Especially since the regime’s spin masters are able to even a negative outcome of the referendum, that is. rejection of the proposed changes to the Constitution is presented as a triumph and the crowning proof of democracy in Vučić’s Serbia.
TODAY: * Why should we vote against, ie “NO”?
Bosko Obradovic: Because the complete procedure is undemocratic, because the election of judges and prosecutors is being moved to the gray zone ruled by judicial dynasties and clans, foreigners and executive commissions. And in that way, their choice takes place outside the eyes of the public. These will no longer be court judgments in the name of the people, but in the name of behind-the-scenes schemes and combinations. The constitution of a country never changes in this way: in a one-party parliament without opposition and public debate, with a change in the Referendum Law twice in the two months before the referendum, which no one does anywhere in the democratic world, and with complete media darkness in which no the side against can be heard. And the essence of the popular vote in the referendum is that both sides can be heard. The REC even violated the Law on Referendum and sent only arguments for changing the Constitution to the citizens’ home addresses, without any arguments against it. Precisely because everything takes place in a completely undemocratic atmosphere, one should step out of spite and say no to such constitutional changes.
TODAY: * Wouldn’t the mobilization of membership and voters in the referendum campaign do good to the DS before the elections?
Dragana Rakić: Citizens are neither acquainted nor interested in this referendum, so they cannot be motivated, especially since they cannot achieve anything with this referendum. Only in the elections on April 3, the citizens can substantially change things, and that is why the mobilization should be timed for those elections.
TODAY: * What would be the victory of the opposition that day?
Bosko Obradovic: The victory would be if the constitutional reforms do not pass, that is. that the majority of citizens vote against constitutional changes. It is also a voice against the current undemocratic and corrupt government, as well as against the pressure and blackmail from Brussels, because of which all this is being done.
Dragana Rakić: There can be no victory for the opposition if there is no outcome that is beneficial for the citizens. And that is exactly the case with this referendum. This regime will continue to violate the Constitution on a daily basis, regardless of what is written in it. I will obviously not care how the citizens will vote in the referendum. The only thing that matters to him is turnout, because high turnout strengthens his position and subsequently gains legitimacy for a completely illegitimate National Assembly. That is why we should not even go to the referendum.
TODAY: * If the referendum confirms the changes to the Constitution, then it will be the first defeat of the opposition before the elections, since you say that this is an opportunity for Vučić’s first move?
Bosko Obradovic: If this referendum passes, then the next step is to remove the preamble on Kosovo and Metohija as an integral part of Serbia from the Constitution, followed by the imposition of mandatory vaccination and permanent passes, then the settlement of migrants and the opening of lithium mines by Rio Tinto throughout Serbia. to stop on January 16, because if the first regime does not pass this first imposition now, neither will this one later. A vote against is a vote for Serbia not to be a colony, for judges and prosecutors not to elect themselves, for the Constitution to be changed only when there is general agreement and agreement. I do not see how we can lose if we all unite around the defense of the Constitution, regardless of our ideological and political differences, as well as the division into power and opposition. No one is allowed to play with the Constitution. The Constitution is a small booklet, but a great legal shrine, and we patriots do not give shrines and we do not give the Constitution.
TODAY: * Can the result of the referendum affect the outcome of the elections in April and in what way?
Bosko Obradovic: Winning the NO option would mean the first defeat of Vucic’s regime after 10 years in power. That alone is enough motivation for all oppositionists to go to the referendum and vote NO. At the same time, it would be a great introduction to the government’s defeat in the April 3rd elections.
Dragana Rakić: The referendum cannot affect the outcome of the elections in April, and that is why it is a waste of time to spend energy and resources on something that the citizens are not interested in or familiar with the essence of the referendum. The day after the referendum, no one will deal with the issue anymore.
Source: Dnevni list Danas by www.danas.rs.
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