Ž. Zovko for “Sarajevo Times”: My Lobbying Will Be of Great Benefit to BiH

The current advisor of the Chairman of the BiH Council of Ministers and the former Ambassador of BiH to France and Spain Željana Zovko is a candidate for the Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) for the elections in the European Parliament.

In an interview with “Sarajevo Times”, Ms. Zovko said that she was honored to be on this prestigious list, especially considering the fact that Croatia is for the first time voting for representatives in the European Parliament.

She is among the few Croats in BiH who is a candidate for the European Parliament.

With the accession of Croatia to the European Union, all BiH citizens who have Croatian citizenship will be considered citizens of the EU and will enjoy the same rights as all other EU citizens.

“It is entirely natural that a person who understands the situation in BiH was requested, a person who could be a bridge that could tie the EU and BIH, and who would push BiH closer towards Europe. My role is to lobby for all people in BiH. During my eight-year career in BiH diplomacy I have demonstrated what lobbyists can do for BiH”.

As an Ambassador of BIH to France and Spain, Željana Zovko achieved a lot of positive results for this country.

Thanks to her involvement, the Old Bridge in Mostar and the Mehmed-paše Sokolovića bridge in Višegradu were included in the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage List.

She also advocated for the Orthodox Church in Mostar, the Ferhadija Mosque in Banja Luka and the Monastery Plehan to become a part of a UNESCO project, and for which representatives of religious organizations and communities in BiH are thankful.

A testament to her successful diplomatic career is that she was able to bring the King of Spain to BiH, making our country the only one in the region that received a visit by the King of Spain.

Ms. Zovko asserts that if elected, she would work to improve the image of BiH in the EU.

“Positive people have the capability to change a lot and turn the tide of pessimistic thinking. BiH always had lobbyists who came here from neighboring and far-away countries. However, they did not know our mentality and opportunities, and could not passionately describe why it is necessary for this country to become a member of the European family as soon as possible. They did not know how to describe that we are a part of Europe, that our geographical location, our mentality, culture and way of life make us Europeans”, said Zovko.

Croatian citizens in BiH will vote on 13 and 14 April for the European Parliament at the polls, which will be open in diplomatic-consulate missions. Their votes will be added to the total number of votes in Croatia for party lists, which are being handed over to the State Election Commission (DIP) these days.

Polling stations will be open in Sarajevo, Mostar, Tuzla and Banja Luka.

“I expect support and I hope that the number of voters will be high. People have to know that they will become EU citizens, to show that they have the right to vote and that they should exercise their rights. If I receive the trust of voters, I will listen to their needs and articulate them in the European Parliament”, said Zovko.

She stressed that excellent contacts and strong diplomatic ties, which were established during her career, would be of invaluable importance for a better representation of Croatia, as well as for BiH in European bodies.

“A man is known by his deeds. One cannot lie in the world. People value experiences and friendly relations that are established for life. I have made a successful career because people trusted the words that I spoke. Honesty opens doors and brings friends’’, concluded Zovko.


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