Satisfaction with work of Kosovo’s PM, institutions drop amid political crisis

Satisfaction with work of Kosovo’s PM, institutions drop amid political crisis
By Valentina Dimitrievska November 1, 2015

The level of public satisfaction with the work of Kosovo’s prime minister, Isa Mustafa, dropped to 14.6% in mid-September, from 23.6% in March, mainly due to the current political situation. This marked the largest drop in people’s satisfaction in a recent poll conducted by UNDP and USAID. Mustafa came to power in December 2014.

Currently Kosovo is undergoing deepening political crisis, with opposition parties boycotting parliament in protest against the country's EU-brokered agreements with Serbia, which give more rights to Serbs in Kosovo, as well as the border demarcation deal reached with Montenegro. The boycott has been accompanied by street protests and the setting off of tear gas in parliament.

According to the poll, only 18% of Kosovars are satisfied with the work of Kosovo’s key executive, legislative and judicial institutions. Similar to March 2015, the highest dissatisfaction remains with the performance of the judiciary, with satisfaction at just 12.8% for the prosecutor’s office and 13.9% for the courts, according to the poll, published on October 29. Satisfaction with the country's central institutions declined to 17.3%, from 18.1% in March.

As far as legislative institutions, only 19.9% are satisfied with the work of the Assembly. The highest level of support is enjoyed by the president, Atifete Jahjaga, with 30.4%, slightly up from March's 30.2%.

When the current findings are compared to previous polls, the prosecutor’s office, courts, prime minister, central institutions and the speaker of the assembly have reached their lowest level of citizens’ satisfaction since March 2007.

Dissatisfaction with the work of Kosovo's key institutions is also reflected in the level of satisfaction with the current political direction of the country. The majority of respondents (68%) said they were dissatisfied with the current political direction, while only 7% said they were satisfied.

When compared with November 2014 and March 2015, the percentage of Kosovars who would be willing to join protests for political reasons increased to 42%, from 39%.

As regards the economic direction of the country, public dissatisfaction is even higher than with the political direction, with 75% of those polled dissatisfied, and only 6% saying they were satisfied.

Corruption remains one of the top three biggest concerns for Kosovars, with a large number of respondents believing that large-scale corruption is prevalent in many institutions, including in the healthcare system, Kosovo Electric Corporation (KEK), courts, customs office, central institutions, privatisation agency and the police.