The decision of two representatives of the PDA who were elected to the Tuzla Canton (TC) Assembly to leave the party and participate in the formation of the government with the SDA brought the story of the politicians who are changing their parties and whether the mandate should belong to a party or an individual.
After individuals decide to leave the party with which they won the mandate in the assembly, reactions usually follow in which the parties ask for the mandate to be returned. However, cases, where the mandate is actually returned, are rare. The law is clear in this regard and the mandate belongs to the individual who won it.
The parties tried to react to these phenomena in various ways. Thus, the PDA called on the high representative to react and order the return of the mandate, while it was also recorded that the Democratic Front (DF) signed contracts with its candidates before the last election. On the basis of that contract, DF initiated proceedings against Edita Velic, who is asking her to pay almost 70.000 BAM for leaving DF and moving to People and Justice (Narod i Pravda – NiP).
Of course, it is also a fact that the parties call for the return of the mandate only when they find themselves on the “damaged” side, and are very happy to accept representatives who won the mandate within the framework of another party into their ranks or parliamentary majorities.
In the previous mandate, as many as 13 representatives in Canton Sarajevo (CS) changed their parties, and of course, none of them felt the need to return the mandate to the party. The most famous names that changed parties were Aljosa Campara, Mirza Celik, Jasna Durakovic, Damir Marjanovic, and Damir Niksic.
Changing party uniforms was not uncommon even at higher levels of government. During his term in the state parliament, Denis Zvizdic left the SDA and joined NiP, while Obren Petrovic left the SDS and joined the SNSD. The SDP did not remain unscathed after the last elections either. Enver Bijedicleft the SDP with which he entered the Parliament of Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) and soon formed the Social Democrats party.
Damir Arnaut left SBB and joined Our Party (Nasa stranka).
At the level of the parliament of the Federation of BiH (FBiH), among others, there are known cases of Adis Arapovic, who left the Alliance for a Better Future, and then founded the Green Party of BiH. Meliha Bijedic, Zlatko Ercegovic, Nedzad Secic, Mile Atlagic, and Hasan Muratovic left SDP in the parliamentary benches of the FBiH, party with which they won the mandate in the 2018 elections.
It remains an open question whether individuals who change their parties after the elections are deceiving their voters and making a caricature of democracy, or are they actually showing the vitality of democracy in BiH with their actions.