Minister Bobnar: The Ministry needs to revert to the rule of law
After the handover, the newly-appointed Minister of the Interior, Tatjana Bobnar, and the Acting Director General of the Police, Boštjan Lindav gave a statement to the media.
“This is the first time that I address you in the role that I, as a professional, have taken on with the main aim of bringing the Ministry and its two constituent bodies back into the hands of the profession and the people," said the new Minister. "Over the last two years, we saw top experts in the field of criminal investigation personally discredited simply because they remained loyal to the profession. We witnessed legal degeneracy and barbarism in the form of decrees. This dark period is now over,” said the Minister, vowing that she and her team would do their utmost to ensure that this never happened again.
"The nature of the work and the area under the remit of the Ministry of the Interior is in itself very demanding. Now we have to bring the operation back into the framework of the rule of law, because no authority is or can be above the law. If we want to restore trust and hope, peace and security, and above all tolerance, then this is the road we have to walk together," the Minister stressed, thanking all those who continued calling out abuses during that time. "We have come through a difficult period, but one that has taught us certain lessons – above all, that nothing can be taken for granted, that every day we have to work to defend human rights and fundamental freedoms, security and freedom."
The Minister said that she knew very well where the line was in relation to the police and promised that she would never cross it. She also assured that the Acting Director General of Police had her full professional support.
Boštjan Lindav thanked Minister of the Interior Tatjana Bobnar for the confidence placed in him. He said that he and his colleagues would primarily seek to rebuild trust in the Slovenian police. He noted that he would strive to increase professionalism of the police and ensure that they operate impartially, while meeting high standards of integrity, fundamental human rights and freedoms, adding that he would also strive to ensure effective security as an important asset of a modern society. “Together with the Minister, police experts and police trade unions” Lindav promised that he would do his best to create good working conditions for police officers, “through an open dialogue and social dialogue to find solutions or proposals aimed at improving police officer status and establishing a career system.”
“I will also work to correct all anomalies and decisions that have been detrimental to the institution and have a long-term effect. That is why it is necessary that experts return to key posts. Our objective is that the police go back to their core mission, which is to keep people safe. The police must act impartially, professionally and lawfully. Political influence has no place in the police,” said Lindav, adding that “over the past two years citizens and police employees alike have experienced first-hand what it looks like to have a police force ruled by politics, and we never want that again.”