EVROPA WEEKLY MAGAZINE, June 1st
CROWN PRINCE OR CROWN PRETENDENT
By Milka Ljubicic
You have stated that Serbia as a
Constitutional Parliamentary Monarchy would reach EU very fast and that
it would attract many foreign investors. What are your arguments for
Constitutional Parliamentary Monarchy will
bring stability to Serbia. We need stability to attract investors. We
would have many more investors if they felt secure for the long term
future of their investment. It is well known that many blue chip
investors are not willing to invest quite yet and are unfortunately put
off at this time. Yes we are lucky to have up to now many fine
investors, but we would have had a flood of them if we did not have the
constant political wrangling and also lack of planning and strategy.
Can you tell us for example, which
investors are not willing to invest the money in Serbia now, and would
invest if Serbia is a Monarchy?
Let’s face it many top firms have come here
and not returned. In a Constitutional Parliamentary Monarch the Prime
Minister and his cabinet rule without the interference from the Head of
state or his office. You must have noticed how stable and democratic
Constitutional Parliamentary Monarchies are like Sweden, Norway,
Denmark, Belgium Holland, United Kingdom, Spain, Japan, Canada etc.
Please do not get me wrong I deeply respect our president and prime
minister, but I feel the system we have now is not very conducive to
stability and progress. By now we should have had many, many more
investors and a far more buoyant economy as the envy of Europe.
On what basis you have that kind of hunch?
If we are going to be in the European Union
and partake in its decision making we cannot afford to have the constant
political rambling and bickering that we have now. Europe will not
tolerate it and nor will the investors. For sure there will be
investors, but no where near the amount we need to achieve full economic
revival and social services. Serbia would do much better with a neutral
head of state that is not a member of any political party or connected
to a political party. We need to cool the constant politics and allow
the government to get on with the task of planning and strategy and not
just wait for a well know situation to hit us in the face. I am calling
for constructive politics and not constant watching who is looking at
Could you explain more to our readers your
thesis that Constitutional Kingdom is "a form of governance close to the
Just look at our history we have always had
kingdoms during good and bad times. Since World War II up to the 5
October 2000 our poor people have been subjected to experiments that
have failed whilst the rest of Europe particularly the west has been
moving steadily ahead. Imagine how much valuable time we have wasted and
all the pain our people have suffered. After the two Empires left our
area we did not have the time to bind and establish our democratic
intuitions because of the rise of fascism, World War II, Civil War,
Communism, the wars of succession during the last decade and the regime
that used negative nationalism and negative religion. We are now
recovering and it is not an easy task. We should use the proven formula
of Constitutional Parliamentary Monarchy to further allow the democratic
process move forward with more stability and a very much improved image
Why do you think that the proclamation of
the Montenegro independence is the “golden time for Serbia to put itself
in order, according to its measures" and to move ahead? Did we miss some
"golden times" before, and why?
We will always need Montenegro as they will
always need us, we are brothers and sisters. We must have the best of
relations with Montenegro and not work against each other. We must have
superlative relations with all our neighbours to have economic success.
We will all come together in the European Union and we can only work for
the common good. Put the egos and stubbornness aside and think of the
people and their well being. We must fulfil our international
obligations. Europe will always move ahead and we have to jump on the
train now and stop stopping in sideways. We cannot fall into conspiracy
theories. The time has come for Serbia.
You explained that the modern monarchy is a
stabile country, and that it is ruled by Assembly and Government and
that the King is above the daily politics, as a guardian of the national
unity, political stability and continuity. If the King is above the
daily politics, how could he preserve the political stability?
By not mixing into daily politics, be
neutral and the meeting point for all. The centre of unity, continuity
and stability. The government rules and the King reigns. It really works
just look at the Kingdom of Spain today, it was a dictatorship and now
it’s a great democracy and member of the European Union all thanks.
You are asking for "mature democratic
debate in the interest of Serbia". How do you plan to achieve that?
Stop the political bickering. Our citizens
need to survive by having jobs and good social services. Do you think
that the constant squabbling will bring more investors or less
investors? My plan is to have a neutral head of state and new image for
Serbia. We need a new image we are all fed up with the negative image.
Do you think a member of the European Union with a negative image loaded
with problems will succeed politically and economically? Absolutely not.
We cannot afford any more wrangling. We can do it if we treat each other
with respect and cut out the political rhetoric and put our people
You have already prepared draft of the
Constitution of the Kingdom of Serbia. What was the row model?
By using examples such as the Spanish
Constitution, or the one that Professor Pavle Nikolic wrote. In the run
up to the Spanish Constitution there was a lot of mature debate and it
is a living one, we would do well to examine. I would recommend a
Constitutional Parliamentary Assembly so Serbia could move ahead with
positive democratic debate and change.
You have mentioned once your good
connections with other Monarchies, especially those in the Middle East
and Asia. Can you be more specific now - how could connections with
those monarchies be used for the good of Serbia?
No only monarchies but republics too. They
are all need for Serbia to move ahead and I have to help prompt the
contacts for Serbia. There was a dream to go to the United States and do
a road show to attract investors, but it bogged down owing to the
constant political state of affairs. I visited New York both in January
and March and the financial institutions were looking forward to hearing
from a team from Serbia. We really have to work on this for our people
when we have the proper set up which is Constitutional Parliamentary
Opponents of the monarchy are constantly
emphasizing big expenses of the Palace. What are the expenses and can
you compare them with some other expenses that goes from the budget of
I do not agree because a republic is much
more expensive. In a Constitutional Parliamentary Monarchy and Republic
there are the main elections such as Parliamentary and local. In a
Constitutional Parliamentary Monarchy there are no presidential
elections and campaign every four years and everyone knows that is
expensive. The staff of a president is very much larger then the king’s
and not to forget the retirement and security for each president over a
lifetime. A King as head of state is very much cheaper.
Serbian Orthodox Church is pro-monarchist.
Considering the current strength of the church and the role that is now
bigger comparing to the time when you returned, do you expect church to
be your right hand in "lobbying" process?
I am grateful to our Serbian Orthodox
Church and also for the respect of our Islamic Community, Roman Catholic
Community and all other religious communities. We must respect all our
citizens regardless of their religion or ethnic origin. We must also
respect all citizens regardless of their views or belief.
After the Fifth October, government decided
to give you the Royal Compound back. Can you summarize these five years
of your life in Serbia?
I was very emotional when I came home and
very grateful to the government. My father had described to me the
palace and it finally became reality because I was at last home. It has
been an extraordinary time and a great pleasure to visit our beautiful
Serbia and people. I am proud to be Serbian and even more so now.
Many distinguished guests from country and
abroad passed through your home. You welcomed a number of ambassadors
and business people. Was there any business arrangement positive for
Serbia that has been closed during the receptions in the Palace?
It has been a pleasure to have heads of
state as our guests and so many domestic and foreign visitors. Positive
things have come out from these visits like banking investment and
companies coming to Serbia. I hosted the first meeting and contact with
the government for many companies and then it went on from there. My
duty has always been to encourage investment.
During the rule of Tito, White Palace
visited Hruschov and Nixon, Elizabeth II, king Juan Carlos etc. How did
you feel back then, knowing that British Queen is sitting in your
I am well aware of all the visitors that
over the years came either to The Royal Palace or The White Palace, I
saw the pictures. Many heads of state commented to me what they saw and
experienced. Today we must turn a new page since we are finally a
democracy like the rest of Europe. There is so much we can do if we all
I AM MORE
CONCERNED ABOUT AMNESIA
In one of your interviews you stated that
you are proud to have "Serbian and Montenegro blood". Are you afraid of
anaemia after the referendum?
I was very sad about Montenegro, but we
cannot afford to have permanent mourning. Regarding anaemia I am more
concerned about amnesia under the sub category
identity and/or perception