Director of Civil Aviation, one of the three candidates who did not meet the criteria

A list of three winning candidates for the position of general director at CAA has been announced, one of which will be decided by the Government. Civil Aviation and the State Commission for Admission have selected precisely the candidates who, according to the monitors within the British project "Corrwatch", do not meet the criterion of work experience.

The Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) together with the State Commission for Admission to senior management positions have announced three candidates who, according to the British project "Corrëatch", do not meet the criteria as winners for the position of general director in CAA.

Alban Ramabaja, Matej Krasniqi and Istref Nimani were awarded the maximum points for this position, who, according to the "Corrwatch" report, do not meet the criteria of work experience.

The competition required eight years of professional work experience, of which 5 in management positions, or four in management positions and a master's degree. Or three years of work experience in management positions and Ph.D.

According to "Corrwatch", Alban Ramabaja has only four years and one day of work experience. 

Matej Krasniqi does not have four full years of experience, and he has not proven it with the statement of payments to the Pension Savings Fund or tax obligations, in accordance with the law in force.

Meanwhile, Istref Nimani has not disclosed valid documents signed or sealed by the institution where he worked for the criterion of managerial experience. According to the report, he did not even make available an identification document that he is a citizen of Kosovo, as requested in the competition.

These three candidates who do not meet the criteria, during the preliminary verification phase, the CAA included them in the short list, together with four others who, despite having met the criteria, were not good enough in the test and interview.

The three names of the winning candidates will be sent to the Minister of Infrastructure, Liburn Aliu, for the recommendation of one of them to the Government.

Safete Selmani, head of the Human Resources Unit at CAA and member of the State Commission for Admission, denied that any of the candidates were favored or discriminated against. However, he did not comment on the findings of "Corrwatch". 

"We are obliged to implement the legal provisions of the law and by-laws, while we do not wish to comment on "Corrwatch", regarding this, because we have an obligation to implement the law. In addition, paragraph 10 of Article 47 of Law 08/L-197 on Public Officials, candidates dissatisfied with the recruitment process, after the announcement of the final results, have the right to appeal to the KPMShCK according to the deadline set in the relevant law," he said. Selman.

On Wednesday, questions were sent to four other members of the State Admissions Commission and to Minister Liburn Aliu, but none of them responded.

KOHA reported at the beginning of June that the Basic Prosecutor's Office in Prishtina has authorized the Kosovo Police to start a pre-criminal investigation for suspected violations during this process. 

The Prosecutor said that the case is still under treatment.

"The Basic Prosecutor's Office in Prishtina is continuing to deal with this case, in full coordination with the Kosovo Police", says a response from the Basic Prosecutor's Office in Pristina
Despite the investigation, the State Commission has completed the recruitment procedures for the position of general director of CAA.

The investigation was preceded by a call from the British Embassy, ​​which supports the project for monitoring appointments to senior management positions. This, after the monitors found that out of the 10 candidates who applied, CAA during the evaluation initially filtered only 4 of them, and then shortlisted 3 others who do not meet the work experience criteria.

In a response that the Embassy gave to KOHAN, it was emphasized that if the process is not reviewed, the investigation must be activated.

"The project has found that three candidates who were added to the list later, did not meet the criteria, therefore it requires that the process be reviewed because this represents a legal violation. If the process is not returned for review, it remains for the justice bodies to assess the validity of the process and the violations identified by the project", the Embassy's response states.

But, in addition to the violations in the process, the composition of the Commission has also been assessed as illegal.
Naser Shamolli is a senior researcher at the Legal and Political Studies Group and has said that contrary to the Law on public officials, the Government has established commissions with acting members.

"One of the basic criteria for the composition of the commissions, it is decisively stated that three of the members must be civil servants in high management positions... Failure to fulfill this criterion that the composition of the commission must be composed of members from a high management level, it leads to illegality and damages, completely violates the process that is supposed to produce meritocracy and bring serious candidates for these positions", said Shamolli.

The Civil Aviation Authority is responsible for the regulation of civil aviation safety and the economic regulation of airports and air navigation services in Kosovo.

In August 2023, the director of CAA, Bujar Ejupi, was dismissed by the Government.