Establishment of the interim secretariat of the constitutional court of the republic of kosovo


Kosovo reached another milestone in its democratic development with the establishment of  the Interim Secretariat of the Constitutional Court.  On Monday, February 2, 2009, the Interim Secretariat will begin to serve Kosovar institutions and citizens by providing them with a legal course to bring complaints before the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Kosovo.   The Interim Secretariat will be located at the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Kosovo, Qyteza Pejton, former building of the KPC, Prishtina.

The Constitutional Court of Kosovo was formally established in January 2009. With its authority to review legislation and individual complaints of rights violations, the Court is the ultimate check on legislative and executive power in Kosovo and the final arbiter of the meaning of constitutional provisions enshrining human rights and freedoms.  

East West Management Institute (EWM), with a grant from UK DFID, provided key technical assistance to a Kosovo government working group charged with establishing the Court. EWMI, a US based not for profit organization, has an established reputation in Kosovo and has more than 18 years experience working in the Balkans through the promotion of the rule of law, market reform and assisting civil society.

President Sejdiu in a letter to EWMI applauded this major accomplishment and offered his and Kosovar institutions support in the further development of the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Kosovo

The rapid and successful establishment of the Court is the result of the support and excellent working cooperation between the Office of the President of Kosovo, the Deputy Prime Minister and the Minister of Public Services and local and international legal experts.  Speaking from NY, Adrian Hewryk, President of EWMI, noted, “We commend the commitment and professionalism of all institutions involved in this effort, which has resulted in the successful establishment of this very important legal body.”  During this process EWMI served as the secretariat of the group, provided the group with critical expertise, and coordinated the input of domestic and international stakeholders.  As a result, the working group achieved impressive results: 

  • The Law on the Constitutional Court was adopted by the Kosovo Assembly in December after six months of intensive work of the working group;
  • The budget for the Court was prepared and entered into the government’s budget plan;
  • The structure of the Secretariat of the Court was agreed upon by the group; and
  • Temporary and permanent locations for the Court were found.  In addition, EWMI has prepared draft Rules of Procedures for the Court that will be available for the members of the Court to review as soon as they are appointed.

As it will be a novel institution for Kosovars, the Court will require extensive technical assistance if it is to be properly established and effective.  EWMI has developed a series of training programs and public information campaigns to meet such pressing challenge that will ensure that Court staff are qualified and well trained, members of the Court have the capacity to implement its mandate, domestic lawyers understand how to bring complaints before the Court, and the public is aware of the Court and its significance