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Tešanj Children to Candidates: “We want the mayor to serve the citizens, not the other way around!”

Municipal mayor candidates in Tešanj Municipality and representatives of political parties whose candidates will run in the forthcoming municipal elections in BiH spoke to students of Tešanj primary schools on Friday. Children asked them numerous questions. This was the first of a series of public debates titled “Child Friendly Municipalities” which will be held in 10 Municipalities covered by the joint UNICEF and European Union Project “Enhancing the Social Protection and Inclusion System for Children in Bosnia and Herzegovina – SPIS”. Municipal mayor candidates in Tešanj Mr. Sead Huskić (SDA party), Seid Brka (BPS party) and Edina Hasaničević (SBBBiH party) answered many questions posed by girls and boys of Tešanj primary schools raising issues of child needs. Children also put forward their ideas and suggestions on how to make Tešanj a child friendly municipality. The debate was moderated by Mirza Saračević, a student, and Muhamed Čabrić, a journalist from Tešanj.

“When will we get a bowling alley?”, “Why is there no cycling and skateboarding lane?”, “Why is there no lighting in our schoolyard?”, “Why do we have water supply cuts?”, “Why cannot we use the sports center free of charge?” These were some of the questions posed by the children of municipal mayor candidates. The children were very clear about their expectations of the winning candidate. 


“I want us to have a mayor who will serve the citizens, rather than the other way around!” said Zerina, an eight-grader. Children also wanted to know why the police were not doing enough to ensure their safety. Scouts Center was another topic discussed. According to the children, the Center lacked the playground, athletic track, benches and a landscaped area where children will be able to play and spend time in nature.

In the end of the debate, the representatives of political parties running in the elections promised to take into consideration everything they had heard and, if elected, to do everything they can to provide more space for the children to play, spend their free time at, play sports and other activities.  They concluded that the public debate was an opportunity for the children to exercise their right to speech; learn firsthand that they can equally participate in the decision making regarding their surroundings; and present their demands to the candidates for whom their parents will vote. 


Public debates are organized by “Infohouse”, the partner in the Project. By October 5th, children in Čelinac, Derventa, Gacko, Gornji Vakuf/Uskoplje, Kupres, Mrkonjić Grad, Posušje, Prnjavor, Velika Kladuša and the Brčko District will have the opportunity to speak to municipal mayor candidates.

“Enhancing the Social Protection and Inclusion System for Children in Bosnia and Herzegovina” is a joint EU and UNICEF project. The European Union has been funding the Project since 2008 with 4.1 million Euros, using the Instrument of Pre-Accession Assistance (IPA). The Project aims to help the building of a system which will provide adequate social protection policy and inclusion to children and their families. 





Djeca Tešnja kandidatima: „Želimo da načelnik služi građanima, a ne da građani služe njemu!“


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