The court hearing scheduled for Thursday has been postponed, in the case where the former Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Rural Development (MAFRD), Nenad Rikalo, the Secretary General of this ministry, Kapllan Halimi and six other officials, Shefki Zeqiri, Ekrem Gjoka, Shkelzen Morina, Leon Thaçi, Lindar Krasniqi and Albana Zeqiri are being accused of corruption.
The presiding judge, Mentor Bajraktari, has announced that due to health reasons, the member of the trial panel, Albina Shabani-Rama, is missing, reports “Oath for Justice”.
“We have tried to change the body, but we did not find it reasonable and we had obstacles to find other members. “So today we will not have the conditions to hold the main trial session”, said Bajraktari.
Witnesses Shqipe Dema and Bekim Hoxha did not present during this hearing either, for whom Judge Bajraktari said that they had been informed in advance about the non-holding of the hearing.
Albana Zeqiri’s defense counsel, lawyer Kushtrim Bytyqi, was also not present, who according to Judge Bajraktari had informed the court that he would be absent.
In these circumstances, the session scheduled for May 7 has been canceled, while the next sessions are expected to be held on June 7 and 10, starting at 9:30.
According to the indictment prepared by the Special Prosecution of the Republic of Kosovo (SPRK), on December 26, 2019, the defendants Nenad Rikalo, Kapllan Halimi, Shefki Zeqiri and Ekrem Gjoka, are accused of collaborating during 2018, in order to enable them to benefit illegal companies such as: consortium “Novus” LLC, to win the grant “Building a modern market for agricultural products” in Pristina, consortium “Dhemetra” LLC to win the grant “Building a factory for the production of manure “(Not being at all in the list of projects which are covered by funding through grants), the consortium” DOO Zubin Potok “for winning the grant” Project for construction of investments in the facility for storage and preservation of fruits “, as well as the consortium NTP Arena Engineering ”in Peja, for obtaining the grant“ Production and processing of meat ”in Peja, have intentionally acted in violation of Law 04 / L-090 on amending and supplementing Law 03 / L-098 on Agriculture Rural Development article 5.1, article 8, article 13 paragraph 1.2, article 4, article 14.2 Law 03 / L098 on Agriculture and Rural Development, article 8 and 9, regulation (QRK) no. 37/2013, article 7.1, paragraph 1.1, Guide and Manual for drafting the concept of documents by the Office of the Prime Minister.
It is said that they did this so that the defendant Nenad Rikalo, in the capacity of Minister in the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Rural Development, exceeded his competencies, drafted a “Special Program”, without a special budget allocated for this project, has decided on the criteria, has determined the regions for financing, the amount of the grant, bypassing the regular procedures of drafting the special program, which was the competence of the Department of Rural Development Policies in MAFRD, overlapping between the measures with regular program, on March 26, 2018, illegally issued a decision no. ref. KM 91/18 for drafting new policies for further development of rural infrastructure and increasing competition in less developed rural areas, in which case the program is submitted to them completed, while the commission was formed only formally.
Further, it is stated that the defendant Kapllan Halimi, in the capacity of the general secretary in this ministry, has exceeded his competencies so that he has illegally issued the decision with ref.no. OPS 266/18, in order to provide illegal benefits to the above-mentioned companies, appoints a working group consisting of 11 members for the preparation of investments in rural infrastructure, being aware that this group is not competent and has no knowledge of the compilation. of this program, while he was aware that this group was only formal, knowing that the draft was submitted by Minister Rikalo himself.
According to the indictment, the defendant Shefki Zeqiri, in the capacity of an official person in this ministry, during 2018, acting illegally, has drafted and approved the Administrative Instruction 09/2018 for the implementation of the special program “Rural Areas Less developed ”, although he knew that this program was drafted in violation of Law 04 / L-090 on amending and supplementing Law 03 / L-098 on Agriculture and Rural Development and Regulation (NRC) no. 37/2013, bypassing the regular procedures of drafting the special program that is the competence of the Rural Development Policy Department in MAFRD.
While, according to the accusation, the defendant Ekrem Gjoka, in the capacity of an official person, acting Chief of the ADA, illegally took the decision ref.no. ZHB-07/4/54/2018 for the formation of the working group, which group will do administrative control, evaluation, approval and contracting of rural infrastructure projects, composed of: Lindar Krasniqi, Shkelzen Morina, Albana Zeqiri and Leon Thaçi, ignoring the fact that this team should be formed by the director, monitored by the director and this group should report to the Director of the Directorate for Project Approval and Rural Development, so the defendant Gjoka intentionally acted in such a way that enabled the aforementioned companies to benefit illegally because he himself was part of the group when the minister had submitted the ready draft to them, acting in this way they caused damage to the budget of the Republic of Kosovo in the amount of 4,000,000 euros.
According to the indictment, the Accused Shkëlzen Morina, Leon Thaçi, Lindar Krasniqi and Albana Zeqiri, on 14 August 2018, interacting in the capacity of officials at the MAFRD, acting illegally, in order to enable them to benefit in illegally, the consortium “Novus” sh.pk for winning the grant “Construction of a modern market for agricultural products” in Prishtina were declared the winners of the consortium “Dhemetra” sh.pk for winning the grant “Construction of a factory for production of organic fertilizer ”in Gjilan, have announced the winner the consortium“ DOO Zubin Potok ”, for winning the grant“ Project for construction of investments in the facility for storage and preservation of fruits ”, have announced the winner the consortium NTP“ Arena Engineering ”, for winning grant “Production and processing of meat”, in Peja, who have not met the legal requirements set by Administrative Instruction 09/2018 for the implementation of the special program Rural areas less z developed ”.