The Ministry of youth and sports has disregarded the opinion of the two out of three associations in charge of the RYCO Governing Board Youth Representative selection process, and proposed a candidate who is engaged in the Ministry of youth and sports for the position of an independent youth representative.
By choosing Jagoš Stojanović for this position, Serbia became the only signatory to RYCO which has two institution representatives in the RYCO GB, making the principal of commanagement – joint management of youth representatives and institution representatives, which made RYCO a unique example of good practice for active participation of young people in decision making – completely pointless.
National Youth Council of Serbia protects the values of active participation of the youth, as well as their independent and autonomous decision making. We regard the appointment of this candidate to be opposed to the core values of KOMS and NAPOR, that it jeopardizes RYCO’s values and violates the statute, which clearly indicates that the youth representative is chosen in a transparent, inclusive and democratic manner and in cooperation with youth representatives.
During the selection process, the candidate withheld the information about his engagement in the Ministry, by failing to include this information in his biography, or to disclose it during the interview, while the National Youth Council of Serbia got to this information through submitting an official Request for information of public importance. If this information did not represent a conflict of interest, it would be featured transparently, and it would not have to be obtained through the Commissioner for Information of Public Importance and Personal Data Protection.
Through its work, the National Youth Council of Serbia equally represents the interests of all youth in Serbia and guarantees to fight against discrimination of youth on any ground. KOMS’ intent is not to discourage young people who work in institutions to participate in these processes, but to protect them from tokenization and from a dependable relationship in which they may lose their jobs if they have a different opinion.
RYCO GB Youth Representative has to be an authentic representative of the youth, independent and autonomous in his decision-making, respecting the laws of the Republic of Serbia and the opinions of the youth and their representatives. In the situation in which the Minister of youth and sports is also the employer of the youth representative, we consider that the candidate will not be independent in decision-making, which is in the interest of the youth.
Because of that, KOMS, as a legally recognized national association of the youth, demands:
- An immediate resolutionof the appointed RYCO GB Youth Representative Jagoš Stojanović.
- The repetition of the RYCO GB Youth Representative selection process, with ensuring maximum transparency and regularity of the selection process.
- The revision of the Memorandum of Understanding and the advancement of the selection process for the RYCO GB Youth Representative, in order to ensure the independency and autonomy of Serbia’s Youth Representative to RYCO GB.
Course the RYCO GB Youth Representative in 2022 selection process:
- On July 20th a Public call for the selection of the Youth Representative of Serbia to Governing Board of RYCO was announced, and was open for 15 days.
- On August 3rd the working group mandate has started, comprised of representatives of KOMS, NAPOR and the National Association of Youth Offices (National KZM)
- On August 5th, the commission has created a scoring matrix and criteria for the second round in the selection process. The commission, comprised of KOMS, NAPOR and National KZM representatives did not reach a consensus over the best candidate for the position of the RYCO GB Youth Representative.
- On August 10th, the selection commission informed the Ministry about not reaching a consensus about the decision and forwarded the official Record of the commission, scoring lists and working biographies of the three candidates that were a part of the final round of the selection process.
- On August 22nd, KOMS directed an official Request for information of public interest to the Ministry of youth and sports regarding the engagement of the RYCO GB YR candidate, Jagoš Stojanović, in the Ministry of youth and sports.
- On September 8th, due to lack of response from the Ministry, KOMS directed an official Appeal to the Commissioner for Information of Public Importance and Personal Data Protection.
- On September 26th, the Ministry of youth and sports proceeded in accordance with KOMS’ Request and delivered a contract between Jagoš Stojanović and the Ministry of youth and sports, starting on October 25th.
- On September 30th, KOMS and NAPOR directed an official letter to the Ministry of youth and sports, requesting for the forementioned candidate to be removed from the ongoing selection process because of the conflict of interested, and for the selection process to be continued with the remaining two candidates.
- On October 10th, the Ministry of youth and sports informed the Secretariat and Governing Board members of RYCO that the Youth Representative of Serbia to the GB of RYCO is Jagoš Stojanović, and noted that the process was ‘’transparent and participatory’’
- In relation to the official letter regarding the conflict of interest, KOMS and NAPOR have not received, until the day of this press release, any response from the Ministry of youth and sports.
- Youth Council Session, scheduled for October 21st, was postponed a few days after it was scheduled, and KOMS has not had a chance to nominate this as a daily agenda item, to request an answer to the letter sent on September 30th, or to receive any explanation from the Ministry of youth and sports.