Scandal at the Ministry of Sport: 143mln dinars to company that doesn’t exist

The affair involving the Ministry of Sport transferring 143 million dinars to a non-existent company, Evropske Univerzitetske Igre 2020 (European University Games 2020) has raised a lot of eyebrows in the Serbian government.

The responsibility of the Sport Minister, Vanja Udovicic is now being brought into question. There are indications that Minister Udovicic knew that the aforementioned company had been established without prior decision of the Assembly of the University Sports Federation of Serbia (USSS), i.e. that it was formed with forged documentation.

The Minister is also criticised for signing a contract on 11th October, 2017, stipulating the realization of  the international sports competition together with Evropske Univerzitetske Igre 2020 Company although the Serbian government had previously allocated money for this very purpose to the USSS. Furthermore, the report compiled by the USSS Supervisory Board says that it was the Ministry of Sports, helmed by Udovicic, that had given the permission to form the said company, and appoint Sinisa Jasnic for its director.

“Some members of the Assembly have already given statements and submitted documentation, but not Sinisa Jasnic. What we know for now is that, on the basis of the minutes and written documents, there was no special purpose for establishing the company and that there was no formal decision made about it. The USSS Assembly members claim that no-one had officially informed them of the formation of the company European University Games 2020 Belgrade, which was registered with the Serbian Business Registers Agency on 14th September, 2017, and that they accidentally found out its existence. They say that the money was transferred from the Ministry of Sports, spent without their consent, namely 130 million dinars in two months, of which even 570,000 EURs went towards the development of the Master Plan for the University Games”, a source of the Blic daily says.

Minister of Youth and Sport, Vanja Udovicic told TV Pink that the company formed by the University Sports Federation of Serbia was not a phantom company, but is engaged in organizing one of the most important sports events – the European University Games 2020 in Belgrade.

“I am surprised by the article in the Blic, primarily because the Ministry of Youth and Sports replied to all the questions that we had received from them. There is nothing sensational in this story. As far as the Ministry is concerned, everything has been done in accordance with the law”, Udovicic said.

As he explained, the Ministry and the University Sports Federation of Serbia had signed a contract with the European University Federation, adding that only that sports federation could form a company that would be engaged in organizing the University Games, popularly called the Universiade.

The Ministry of Youth and Sport denies any involvement of Minister Vanja Udovicic in the whole case.

“The Ministry did not play the Government because we do not have the information that there was no formal decision to establish the Evropske Univerzitetske Igre 2020 Company. The company was regularly registered with the Serbian Business Registers Agency. We have a report on the spent funds under the project implementation, contract number 451-02-1968 / 2017-03-01, compiled by auditing company PKF Accountants & Business Advisers. They have noted that the costs associated with the Evropske Univerzitetske Igre 2020 Company were in line with the contract. We have found out from this report  that the master plan was made by the European University Sports Association and that it cost 68,554,200 dinars. The allegations about Udovicic’s participation in the entire case are unfounded”, says the Ministry of Sport.

(Blic, 18.03.2018)


This post is also available in: Italiano

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