Inaugural Address


Your Holiness,

Your Reverences,

Dear Mufti of Banja Luka and Bishop Mr. Komarica,

Dear Prime Minister of the Government of the Republic of Serbia Ana Brnabić, thank you for coming. It is very important to me that you are here with your ministers. I would like to greet you all and ask you to convey my greetings to the President of Serbia Mr. Vučić,

Dear Speaker of the National Assembly of the Republic of Srpska Mr. Nenad Stevandić,

Prime Minister Mr. Višković,

Dear Mrs. Željka Cvijanović, former President of the Republic of Srpska,

Mr. Čavara, President of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, I especially want to greet you,

With much gratitude, I would like to greet you, your excellencies, who have shown a special honor to me tonight and in a way you have created an obligation to work diligently in the coming days and years to establish stability, peace and everything that is in our common interest.

I am proud of the fact that you found the time to be here. We will notice it very well, just as we notice those who are not here. In any case, I do not know what it is either, but surely politics contributed to the fact that I was elected President of the Republic of Srpska for the third time. In this mandate, in the years and in the very challenging time that is coming, we always think that what comes before us may be more difficult than what was behind us. We have been through pandemics and a lot more. Here, in this region, it is never boring, there are always some processes that require new engagement and many other things.

It seems to me that the responsibility I have received in this mandate is far greater than before. And that is not because I am older today and because I understand more, but because I know and I understood the message of the people who not only elected me for the third time as the President of the Republic, but also ones who elected me three times as the Prime Minister and once for the Serb member of the BiH Presidency. It speaks of the fact that I really owe a great debt to this nation in meeting their expectations. And I think I can understand them. What the people expect from me, which is to preserve peace and stability, and what they would say to me in ordinary speech is to preserve the Republic of Srpska. The Republic of Srpska within its framework related to the Dayton Agreement has a lot and enough capacity to express itself and the Serbs here accepted to stay in Bosnia and Herzegovina because they received the Dayton Agreement and the Constitution within it, which clearly placed the position of the Republic of Srpska.

Unfortunately, we think that some of the rights we received from that agreement have been taken away from us. We will work very dedicatedly and try to convince many others that it is very important to return those rights to us and to establish the functions that, in our opinion, 83 of them, were unjustifiably taken away from us. We will try to do it exclusively through political means. We believe we have the right to do so. We also want the Constitution of Bosnia and Herzegovina as it is written, and we will decide whether or not we want to enter into reforms that are like this or that, and they are often served to us as something that we have to do to our detriment.

Certainly, being the President of the Republic of Srpska is a great honor. Republic of Srpska directly elects the president. These elections were a great chance for many others, but the people still elected me. Speaking of giving me another mandate, I certainly will not question it. I will work dedicatedly every day with Serbia, Montenegro, Croatia and the Federation, the region, so that our relations are as good as possible. Of course, we will also work with the European Union on issues that are important for our European path, which we have not given up yet. We want to be on that path. We want to have more and we will appreciate anyone who wants to talk with us about all these issues and not to talk about us only. These are our issues, we are sovereignly responsible for them. And we will do that, and we call on everyone in the Brussels administration and in the member countries to sort of repackage their priorities and try to solve our mutual issues, rather than persistently insisting on issues that will never be resolved. It sometimes seems to us that it is done on purpose so as not to go anywhere. We want to join the European Union and that is not in dispute. But equally, the Republic of Srpska has made a sovereign decision that it does not want and will not be a member of NATO, and that will be within the framework in which I will behave and act, but we also want to cooperate on those issues.

We want to cooperate with other big countries as well. The European Union, Russia, China, and other countries as well, such as the United States of America. However, we have to take care only of ourselves. All these years, all these mandates, I have learned from our partners from abroad to take care of ourselves. And we will do that without hesitation. Without offending anyone and without questioning anyone.

I would like to say that today I started consultations for the prime minister and I also had my first working meeting with the vice-presidents from the Bosniak and Croat people. I have to say that what we have agreed today is really relaxing and promising. I want to deal with issues related to the ordinary people together with them. To go with them to their communities, Bosniak and Croat, and see there what we can do, because these are people who live in the Republic of Srpska and they equally need the attention of our institutions, and in this respect I understand very well, Your Holiness, the messages you sent out.

Peace among us, of course, must be a priority. The Republic of Srpska does not ask for anything except that its constitutional position is respected. Those who decide will have to finally admit that they are talking to us about the reforms that have already been undertaken. We are not satisfied with the judicial system in Bosnia and Herzegovina. It was torn away and imposed against our will. We are not satisfied with some other segments as well. Turning your head away from it will achieve nothing. We will soon, perhaps faster than ever before, have government institutions formed at the BiH level and if there is a discussion between us about our problems, without imposition from outside, it is absolutely possible to move a bit faster. However, in order to do that, we must not disturb each other.

Today, unjustifiably at the BiH level, projects with a value of over three billion have been stopped in the Republic of Srpska. I have never received the explanation I asked for as a member of the BiH Presidency. I have been told they do not need to explain to me why they are voting against, and I think that is the worst possible thing. I do not want to stop any project in the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, I do not want to stop any project for Bosniaks or Croats. I do not want to do anything bad to any individual or person, no matter what religion or nation they are. Equally, I am the President of the Republic and I will not allow someone to stop projects worth three billion just because someone has a whim to do so.

I would like to thank Mr. Ambassador of the Russian Federation and the Russian Federation for the contacts we have, the development we have, the support we receive. This is something that is very important to us and we will continue to move in that way. We are too small a community to even accept the game that is taking place regarding the conflict in Ukraine and to make up our minds about it. We do not want to lose any partnership. We want to remain partners with everyone, and those who want to put us only under their political wing must know that we will remain our own and that we will patiently wait for this conflict to end as soon as possible and the foundations of permanent peace, unshakable peace in Europe and in the world are laid. The Republic of Srpska must use all its good relations with everyone, and I would like to invite you to cooperate, I invite you to peace, tolerance. I will be available and open to all people, all ideas, just do not touch the Republic of Srpska. I cannot stand that and no one will ever have a collaborator in me on any obstructions for the good path and development of the Republic of Srpska.

We are not against Bosnia and Herzegovina as some here are trying to present. We are for Bosnia and Herzegovina as it is written in the Constitution. Give us that Bosnia and Bosnia is not disputed. Bosnia and Herzegovina with the reforms of high representatives and the lies that we have seen and listened to all previous decades is unacceptable for us and will not be sustainable. It may seem to you that we are small, so we may not be able to do anything, but I tell you that what is great about us is the character we have, the perseverance that we have. I have learned one lesson, and that is that if you want to be successful then you have to be persistent both when it is good and when it is not good, and we are persistent. We are only looking for our constitutional position and nothing more, but of course no less, and I think we will agree on that. We can also talk about reforms in Bosnia and Herzegovina, but we have to talk again about the judiciary, we have to talk again about the abuses of the intelligence service that we transferred to the level of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and it has become a service against the Republic of Srpska, against us. We are the main ones they followed, we do not want to watch it anymore. They followed Serbia, they followed us, and that is not an intelligence service that we want to support, and if there is no reform, we will cancel it. We will not hesitate to cancel it. I must also tell you, do not think that I am telling you this without cover, and the cover is my knowledge and my conviction and that of my associates who persistently remain in the same positions. Do not tempt us on the issues of competence of the Republic of Srpska, accept it and help us talk. Everything we agree on, we will fulfill.

We want peace. We want stability. We want good cooperation with the European Union, Serbia, Croatia, Russia, China, with everyone, whoever wants, the door is open. The Republic of Srpska is wide enough and big enough to embrace everyone who is different and others, from near and far, of other religions and nations. The Republic of Srpska is here to present exactly the best that the Serb people, who are the majority here, show, and that is breadth for others, breadth for the guest, acceptance of others, different and acceptance of everything that brings and contributes to peace.

May we all be alive and healthy. Long live the Republic of Srpska and the Serb people.

Thank you all for being here.

I would like to raise this glass on behalf of all of us. To your health, you personally, your families, your nations, countries and companies and everything you represent or do, to preserve peace and stability in this difficult and uncertain times. Let us talk about everything. Let us be human and behave that way.