President of Croatia

Last updated

President of
the Republic of Croatia
Predsjednik Republike Hrvatske
Flag of the President of Croatia.svg
Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovicile (34771463620).jpg
Incumbent
Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović

since 19 February 2015
Style Mister/Madam President (Gospodin/Gospođa predsjednik/predsjednica)
His/Her Excellency (Njegova/Njezina Ekselencija)
Residence Private residence
Predsjednički dvori (official workplace and office)
Appointer Popular vote (Last election)
Term length Five years
renewable once
Constituting instrument Constitution of Croatia
Inaugural holder Franjo Tuđman
Formation22 December 1990;28 years ago (1990-12-22)
Salary HRK 37,000 ($5,452) monthly
HRK 445,000 ($65,430) annually [1]
Website predsjednica.hr
Coat of arms of Croatia.svg
This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
Croatia
Constitution

The President of Croatia (Croatian : Predsjednik Hrvatske), officially styled the President of the Republic (Croatian : Predsjednik Republike), is the head of state, commander in-chief of the military and chief representative of the Republic of Croatia both within the country and abroad. The President is the holder of the highest office within the Croatia's order of precedence, however, the president is not the head of the executive branch ("non executive president") as Croatia has a parliamentary system in which the holder of the post of Prime Minister is the most powerful person within the country's constitutional framework and within everyday's politics.

Croatian language South Slavic language

Croatian is the standardized variety of the Serbo-Croatian language used by Croats, principally in Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Serbian province of Vojvodina, and other neighboring countries. It is the official and literary standard of Croatia and one of the official languages of the European Union. Croatian is also one of the official languages of Bosnia and Herzegovina and a recognized minority language in Serbia and neighboring countries.

A style of office, honorific or manner/form of address, is an official or legally recognized form of address, and may often be used in conjunction with a title. A style, by tradition or law, precedes a reference to a person who holds a post or political office, and is sometimes used to refer to the office itself. An honorific can also be awarded to an individual in a personal capacity. Such styles are particularly associated with monarchies, where they may be used by a wife of an office holder or of a prince of the blood, for the duration of their marriage. They are also almost universally used for presidents in republics and in many countries for members of legislative bodies, higher-ranking judges and senior constitutional office holders. Leading religious figures also have styles.

A head of state is the public persona who officially represents the national unity and legitimacy of a sovereign state. Depending on the country's form of government and separation of powers, the head of state may be a ceremonial figurehead or concurrently the head of government. In a parliamentary system the head of state is the de jure leader of the nation, and there is a separate de facto leader, often with the title of prime minister. In contrast, a semi-presidential system has both heads of state and government as the leaders de facto of the nation.

Contents

The President maintains the regular and coordinated operation and stability of the national government system, and safeguards the independence and territorial integrity of the country. The President has the power to call ordinary and extraordinary elections for the Croatian Parliament (in a manner specified by the Constitution), as well as to call referenda (with countersignature of the Prime Minister). The President formally appoints the Prime Minister on the basis of the balance of power in parliament and consultations conducted with the leaders of parliamentary parties, grants pardons and awards decorations and other state awards. The President and Government (Cabinet) cooperate in conducting foreign policy. In addition, the President is the commander-in-chief of the Croatian Armed Forces. The President appoints the director of the Security and Intelligence Agency in agreement with the Prime Minister. The President may dissolve the Parliament under circumstances provided by the Constitution. Although enjoying immunity, the President is impeachable for violation of the Constitution. In case of a temporary or permanent incapability by the president to discharge the duties of his or her office, the Speaker of the Parliament assumes the office of Acting President until the President resumes his or her duties, or until the election of a new president within 60 days of the permanent vacancy occurring.

Croatian Parliament parliament

The Croatian Parliament or the Sabor is the unicameral representative body of the citizens of the Republic of Croatia; it is Croatia's legislature. Under the terms of the Croatian Constitution, the Sabor represents the people and is vested with legislative power. The Sabor is composed of 151 members elected to a four-year term on the basis of direct, universal and equal suffrage by secret ballot. Seats are allocated according to the Croatian Parliament electoral districts: 140 members of the parliament are elected in multi-seat constituencies, 8 from the minorities and 3 from the Croatian diaspora. The Sabor is presided over by a Speaker, who is assisted by at least one deputy speaker.

Constitution of Croatia

The Constitution of the Republic of Croatia is promulgated by the Croatian Parliament.

A referendum is a direct vote in which an entire electorate is invited to vote on a particular proposal. This may result in the adoption of a new law. In some countries, it is synonymous with a plebiscite or a vote on a ballot question.

The Office of the President of the Republic (Ured Predsjednika Republike) consists of the immediate staff of the President of Croatia, as well as support staff reporting to the president. The office is located in the Presidential Palace in the Pantovčak area of Zagreb. The Constitution of Croatia defines the appearance and use of the presidential standard, which is flown on the buildings of the Office of the President, the residence of the president, any vehicles in use by the president, and in other ceremonial occasions.

Presidential Palace, Zagreb

The Presidential Palace in Zagreb is the official workplace of the President of Croatia since late 1991. However, the president does not reside in the building and it is instead used to house the Office of the President, while the president continues to reside in his or her private residence during the duration of their term of office.

Pantovčak is a neighborhood in Zagreb, Croatia. Its formal location is the Gornji Grad - Medveščak city district. The Pantovčak street runs from the Britanski trg near Ilica towards Medvednica, ending at Šestinski vijenac. The neighbourhood is officially referred to as "Dr. Stjepan Radić" and it has a population of 4,957 (2011).

Ceremony event of ritual significance, performed on a special occasion

A ceremony is an event of ritual significance, performed on a special occasion. The word may be of Etruscan origin, via the Latin caerimonia.

The President is elected on the basis of universal suffrage, through a secret ballot, for a five-year term. If no candidate in the elections secures more than 50% of all votes cast (including blank and spoilt ballots), a runoff election is held. The Constitution of Croatia sets a limit of a maximum of two terms in office. The president-elect is required to take an oath of office before the judges of the Constitutional Court. Franjo Tuđman won the first Croatian presidential elections in 1992 and 1997. During his time in office, the constitution adopted in 1990 provided for a semi-presidential system, which was in the coming years further strengthened by laws specifically aimed at providing Tuđman with sweeping powers (e.g. naming and dismissing numerous government officials, confirming county prefects), as his HDZ party held a supermajority in parliament throughout the 1990s. After his death in 1999, the constitution was amended and many presidential powers were transferred to parliament, the prime minister and the government. Stjepan Mesić won two consecutive terms, in 2000 and in 2005 and served as president until 2010. Ivo Josipović won the presidential elections held in 2009–2010 and left office in 2015 after losing his reelection bid for a second term. The winner of the most recent presidential elections, held in December 2014 and January 2015, was Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović. She succeeded Josipović on 19 February 2015 for a term lasting until 18 February 2020.

Universal suffrage Political concept

The concept of universal suffrage, also known as general suffrage or common suffrage, consists of the right to vote of all adult citizens, regardless of property ownership, income, race, or ethnicity, subject only to minor exceptions. In its original 19th-century usage by political reformers, universal suffrage was understood to mean only universal manhood suffrage; the vote was extended to women later, during the women's suffrage movement.

Secret ballot voting style that makes each vote anonymous

The secret ballot, also known as Australian ballot, is a voting method in which a voter's choices in an election or a referendum are anonymous, forestalling attempts to influence the voter by intimidation, blackmailing, and potential vote buying. The system is one means of achieving the goal of political privacy.

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Powers, duties and responsibilities

The President of Croatia, officially styled the President of the Republic (Croatian : Predsjednik Republike) represents the Republic of Croatia in the country and abroad as the head of state, maintains the regular and coordinated operation and stability of the national government system and safeguards the independence and territorial integrity of the country. The president is barred from executing any other public or professional duty while in office. [2]

The President of Croatia calls elections for the Croatian Parliament (Croatian : Hrvatski Sabor) and convenes the first meeting of the parliamentary assembly. The president is also required to appoint a prime minister, on the basis of the balance of power in the parliament. The appointed candidate is in turn required to seek confirmation from the parliament through a confidence vote, in order to receive a mandate to lead the Croatian Government (after given confidence by the absolute majority of the MPs, the President formally appoints the candidate as Prime Minister, while PM appoints ministers; all with the countersignature of the Speaker of the Croatian Parliament). The president may also call referenda, grant pardons and award decorations and other forms of recognition defined by legislation. [2]

Prime Minister of Croatia position

The Prime Minister of Croatia, officially the President of the Government of the Republic of Croatia, is Croatia's head of government, and is de facto the most powerful and influential state officeholder in the Croatian system of government. Following the first-time establishment of the office in 1945, the 1990-2001 semi-presidential period is the only exception where the President of Croatia held de facto authority. In the formal Croatian order of precedence, however, the position of prime minister is the third highest state office, after the President of the Republic and the Speaker of the Parliament.

In politics, a mandate is the authority granted by a constituency to act as its representative.

Speaker of the Croatian Parliament Wikimedia list article

The Speaker of the Croatian Parliament is the presiding officer in the Croatian Parliament (Sabor), Croatia's legislative body.

Foreign affairs

The President of Croatia and the Government cooperate in the formulation and implementation of Croatia's foreign policy. This provision of the constitution is an occasional source of conflict between the president and the government. [3] The president decides on the establishment of diplomatic missions and consular offices of the Republic of Croatia abroad, at the Government's proposal and with the countersignature of the prime minister. The president, following prior countersignature of the prime minister, appoints and recalls diplomatic representatives of the Republic of Croatia, at the proposal of the Government and upon receiving the opinion of an applicable committee of the parliament. The president receives letters of credence and letters of recall from foreign diplomatic representatives. [2]

National security and defense

The President of Croatia is the commander-in-chief of the armed forces of the Republic of Croatia and appoints and relieves military commanders of duty, conforming to applicable legislation. Pursuant to decisions of the parliament, the president declares war and concludes peace. In cases of immediate threats to the independence, unity and existence of the state, the president may order the use of armed forces, even if no state of war is declared, provided that such an order is countersigned by the prime minister. During a state of war, the president may promulgate regulations with the force of law on the basis of, and within the scope of, authority obtained from the parliament. In such circumstances, the president may convene government cabinet meetings and preside over them. If the parliament is not in session, the president is authorized to regulate all matters required by the state of war through regulations carrying the force of law. In case of an immediate threat to the independence, unity and existence of the state, or if the governmental bodies are prevented from performing their constitutional duties regularly, the president may, at the proposal of the prime minister, issue regulations carrying the force of law. Such regulations must also be countersigned by the prime minister to become valid. The president is required to submit regulations that are promulgated thus to the parliament for approval as soon as the parliament may convene, otherwise the regulations become void. The president cooperates with the government directing operation of the Croatian security and intelligence system. The president and the prime minister jointly appoint heads of the security agencies, and the president may attend cabinet meetings, taking part in discussions held at such meetings. [2]

Dissolution of Parliament

The President of Croatia may dissolve Parliament upon the request of the government if the government proposes a confidence motion to Parliament and the majority of all deputies adopt a motion of no confidence or if Parliament fails to approve government budget 120 days after the budget is proposed in the parliament. That decision must be countersigned by the Prime Minister to become valid. The President may also dissolve Parliament after a motion of no confidence supported by a majority of all deputies has been adopted and a new government cannot be formed within 30 days or if a new government cannot be formed after general elections (maximum period of 120 days). However, the President may not dissolve Parliament at the request of the government if a procedure to determine if the President has violated provisions of the constitution is in progress. [2]

Office of the President

The North Salon is the main conference room in the Presidential Palace. Predsjednicki Dvori - Conference room.JPG
The North Salon is the main conference room in the Presidential Palace.
The lobby of the Presidential Palace Predvorje Predsjednicki dvori.jpg
The lobby of the Presidential Palace
An honor guard in front of the Presidential Palace normally welcomes foreign heads of state. On the picture: President of Israel Reuven Rivlin, first state visit to Croatia 2018. Reuven Rivlin state visit to Croatia, July 2018 (1173).jpg
An honor guard in front of the Presidential Palace normally welcomes foreign heads of state. On the picture: President of Israel Reuven Rivlin, first state visit to Croatia 2018.

The Office of the President of the Republic (Croatian : Ured Predsjednika Republike) consists of the immediate staff of the President of Croatia, as well as support staff reporting to the president. As of May 2008, the office employed 170 staff, with the maximum staffing level set at 191 by the Regulation on Internal Organisation of the Office of the President of Croatia. [4] In 2009 government budget, the office was allocated 54 million kuna (c. 7.3 million euro). [5] The net monthly salary of the president is 23,500 kuna (c. 3,170 euro). [6] [7]

The Office of the President was created by a presidential decree by Franjo Tuđman on 19 January 1991. [8] The Office is headed by a Chief of Staff (Croatian : Predstojnik ureda), who is appointed by the president. The presidents declare bylaws regulating composition of the office. [9] The office employs advisors to the president and comprises eight departments, four councils, presidential pardon commission and two decorations and awards commissions. [10]

Office of the President of the Republic of Croatia [10]
PositionName
Chief of StaffAnamarija Kirinić
Head of the Personal Office of the PresidentNatalija Hmelina
Secretary General of the Office of the President of the RepublicMirjam Katulić
Chief of StaffTerm startTerm endAppointed by
Hrvoje Šarinić 15 April 1992 [11] 7 August 1992
Franjo Tuđman
Jure Radić 7 August 1992 [12] 12 October 1994
Hrvoje Šarinić 12 October 1994 [13] 24 November 1995
Ivo Sanader 24 November 19955 November 1996 [14]
Hrvoje Šarinić 5 November 1996 [15] 1998
Ivica Kostović 1998 [16] January 2000 [17]
Željko Dobranović22 May 2000 [18] 27 April 2001 [19] Stjepan Mesić
Davor Božinović 10 February 2004 [20] 30 September 2005
Boris Šprem 1 October 2005late 2007 [21]
Amir Muharemi1 April 2008 [22] 19 February 2010
Joško Klisović19 February 201031 December 2011 [23]
Ivo Josipović
Vito Turšić1 February 201218 February 2015 [24]
Domagoj Juričić19 February 2015 [25] 2 May 2016 [26]
Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović
Anamarija Kirinić2 May 2016 [26]

Presidential Palace

The Presidential Palace (Croatian : Predsjednički dvori, also referred to by the metonym Pantovčak ) in Zagreb is the official workplace of the president. The president does not actually live in the building, as it is used as the Office of the President of Croatia rather than as a residence. The structure covers 3,700 square metres (40,000 square feet). It had been used as the official residence since then-president Franjo Tuđman moved there following the October 1991 bombing of Banski dvori. In addition to the original building, there is also an 3,500 square metres (38,000 square feet) annex built in 1993, an ancillary structure housing office security services and a bomb shelter predating the 1990s. [5] The building, formerly known as Villa Zagorje or Tito's Villa, was designed by architects Vjenceslav Richter and Kazimir Ostrogović and completed in 1964 for the former Yugoslav president Josip Broz Tito. [5] [27]

Election and taking office

Presidential inaugurations
PresidentDateNote
Franjo Tuđman 12 August 1992first term [28]
5 August 1997second term [29]
Stjepan Mesić 19 February 2000first term [30]
19 February 2005second term [31]
Ivo Josipović 19 February 2010one term [32]
Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović 19 February 2015incumbent, first term

The president is elected on the basis of universal suffrage, through a secret ballot, for a five-year term. If no candidate in the elections secures more than 50% of the votes, a runoff election is held in 14 days. The Constitution of Croatia sets a limit to a maximum of two terms in office and requires election dates to be determined within 30 to 60 days before the expiry of the term of the incumbent president. [2] Any citizen of Croatia of 18 or over may be a candidate in a presidential election, provided that the candidate is endorsed by 10,000 voters. The endorsements are required in form of a list containing name, address, personal identification number and voter signature. The presidential elections are regulated by an act of the parliament. [33]

The constitution requires that the president-elect resign from political party membership. [2] The president-elect is also required to resign from the parliament as well. [34] Before assuming presidential duty, the president-elect is required to take an oath of office before the judges of the Constitutional Court, swearing loyalty to the Constitution of Croatia. The inauguration ceremony is traditionally held at St. Mark's Square in Zagreb, in front of the St. Mark's Church, midway between the building of the Parliament of Croatia and Banski dvori—the seat of the Government of Croatia. [32] The text of the oath is defined by the Presidential Elections Act amendments of 1997. [35] The text in its Croatian form is not sensitive to gender and all nouns (e.g. Predsjednik (President), državni poglavar (head of state)) always retain their masculine form, even when the president being sworn in is a woman (as was the case with Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović in 2015). There is however a notation within the Constitution of Croatia which states that all nouns used within the text of the document apply equally to both genders. The text of the presidential oath of office is as follows:

Original Croatian text:

Prisežem svojom čašću da ću dužnost predsjednika Republike Hrvatske obavljati savjesno i odgovorno, na dobrobit hrvatskog naroda i svih hrvatskih državljana. Kao hrvatski državni poglavar:

  • držat ću se Ustava i zakona,
  • brinuti se za poštovanje ustavnopravnog poretka Republike Hrvatske,
  • bdjeti nad urednim i pravednim djelovanjem svih tijela državne vlasti,
  • čuvati nezavisnost, opstojnost i jedinstvenost države Hrvatske.

Tako mi Bog pomogao.

English version:

I swear with my honor that I will carry out the duty of the President of the Republic conscientiously and responsibly, to the benefit of the Croatian people and all Croatian citizens. As the Croatian head of state I will:

  • abide by the Constitution and laws,
  • take care that the constitutional order of the Republic of Croatia is respected,
  • watch over the orderly and just functioning of all organs of the state,
  • guard the independence, existence and unity of the Croatian state.
So help me God.

Presidential elections

Ivo Josipovic, election victory speech Josipovic election night.jpg
Ivo Josipović, election victory speech

Presidential elections were held in Croatia for the first time on 2 August 1992, simultaneously with the 1992 parliamentary elections. Voter turnout was 74.9%. The result was a victory for Franjo Tuđman of the Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ), who received 57.8% of the vote in the first round of the elections, ahead of 7 other candidates. Dražen Budiša, the Croatian Social Liberal Party (HSLS) candidate and runner-up in the election, received 22.3% of the vote. The second presidential elections in modern Croatia were held on 15 June 1997. The incumbent, Franjo Tuđman ran opposed by Zdravko Tomac, the candidate of the Social Democratic Party of Croatia (SDP), and Vlado Gotovac, nominated by the HSLS. Tomac and Gotovac received 21.0% and 17.6% of votes respectively in the first round of voting, and Tuđman secured another term. The third presidential elections were held on 24 January 2000, to fill the office of the President of the Republic, after the incumbent Franjo Tuđman died on 10 December 1999. [36] The first round of voting saw Stjepan Mesić, candidate of the Croatian People's Party (HNS) in the lead, receiving 41.3% of votes, followed by Dražen Budiša of the HSLS with 27.8% of votes and Mate Granić, nominated by the HDZ, receiving 22.6% of votes. The runoff election, the first in the presidential elections of modern Croatia, was held on 7 February, when Mesić won, picking up 56.9% of votes. Voter turnout in the first round was 63.0% and 60.9% in the runoff. [37] The first round of the fourth presidential elections was held on 2 January 2005. No candidate secured a first-round victory; however, the incumbent Mesić enjoyed a substantial lead over other candidates, as he received 48.9% of votes, and the second and third ranked candidates Jadranka Kosor (HDZ) and Boris Mikšić (independent) managed only 20.3% and 17.8% of voter support respectively. Ultimately, Mesić won reelection, receiving 65.9% of votes in the runoff held on 16 January. The 2009–2010 presidential election was held on 27 December 2009, with Ivo Josipović (SDP) picking up 32.4% of votes, followed by Milan Bandić (independent), Andrija Hebrang (HDZ) and Nadan Vidošević (independent) receiving 14.8%, 12.0% and 11.3% of the votes respectively. The second round of voting was held on 10 January 2010, when Josipović defeated Bandić, receiving 60.3% of the vote. [38] The first round of the most recent presidential election was held on 28 December 2014, where Josipović won 38.46% of the votes, followed by Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović (HDZ) who received 37.22% of ballots. The third was an independent candidate, Ivan Vilibor Sinčić who received 16.42% of votes, and Milan Kujundžić (Croatian Dawn – Party of the People) who was supported by 6.3% of the votes. [39] The runoff was held on 11 January 2015, and Grabar-Kitarović won by a margin of approximately one percentage point. [40]

ElectionCandidatesFirst round
voter turnout
First round results
(candidates with more than 10% of votes)
Second round
voter turnout
WinnerRunner-up
1992 874.90% Franjo Tuđman (57.8%), Dražen Budiša (22.3%)N/AFranjo Tuđman (57.8%)Dražen Budiša (22.3%)
1997 354.62%Franjo Tuđman (61.4%), Zdravko Tomac (21.0%), Vlado Gotovac (17.6%)N/AFranjo Tuđman (61.4%)Zdravko Tomac (21.0%)
2000 962.98% Stjepan Mesić (41.3%), Dražen Budiša (27.8%), Mate Granić (22.6%)60.88%Stjepan Mesić (56.0%)Dražen Budiša (44.0%)
2005 1350.57%Stjepan Mesić (48.9%), Jadranka Kosor (20.3%), Boris Mikšić (17.8%)51.04%Stjepan Mesić (65.9%)Jadranka Kosor (34.1%)
2009–10 1243.96% Ivo Josipović (32.4%), Milan Bandić (14.8%),
Andrija Hebrang (12.04%), Nadan Vidošević (11.33%)
50.13%Ivo Josipović (60.3%)Milan Bandić (39.7%)
2014–15 447.12%Ivo Josipović (38.96%), Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović (37.22%),
Ivan Vilibor Sinčić (16.42%)
59.06%Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović (50.7%)Ivo Josipović (49.3%)
Source: State Election Commission [38]

History

Tapestry in the Office of the President, flanked by a bust of Ante Starcevic and a statue of King Tomislav Tapiserija Ured predsjednika RH.JPG
Tapestry in the Office of the President, flanked by a bust of Ante Starčević and a statue of King Tomislav

The Socialist Republic of Croatia within SFR Yugoslavia was led by a group of communist party officials, who formed a collective Presidency with the president of the Presidency at its head. The first democratic elections of 1990 did not elect members of the Presidency directly. Rather, the parliament was tasked with filling these positions as it had done in the socialist period. The HDZ won the elections and its leader Tuđman assumed the presidency on 30 May 1990. On 25 July of the same year, the parliament passed several constitutional amendments, including amendment LXXI, which created the position of President and Vice-Presidents. [41] The Christmas Constitution, passed on 22 December 1990, established the government as a semi-presidential system and called for presidential elections. [42]

Tuđman won the presidential elections in 1992, and was inaugurated on 12 August 1992. He was reelected in 1997, and the Constitution of Croatia was amended the same year. [42] After his death in 1999, the constitution was amended and much of the presidential powers were transferred to the parliament and the government, creating a parliamentary system. [43] Mesić won two consecutive terms in 2000 on the HNS ticket and in 2005, the maximum term permitted by the constitution. Josipović, an SDP candidate, won the presidential elections held in 2009–2010. [38] Grabar-Kitarović won the elections of 2014–15 and she was voted to become the first woman president of Croatia. [40]

Immunity and impeachment

The President of Croatia enjoys immunity—the president may not be arrested, nor can any criminal proceedings be instituted against the president without prior consent from the Constitutional Court. The only case in which immunity does not apply is if the president has been caught in the act of committing a criminal offense, which carries a penalty of imprisonment for more than five years. In such a case the state body that has detained the president must notify the President of the Constitutional Court immediately. [2]

The President of Croatia is impeachable for any violation of the Constitution committed in performance of duty. Impeachment proceedings may be initiated by the Parliament of Croatia by a two-thirds majority vote of all members of the parliament. The impeachment of the president is then decided by the Constitutional Court, by a two-thirds majority vote of all its judges. If the Constitutional Court impeaches the president, the president's term is terminated. [2]

Vacancy or incapacity

In case of brief incapacitation to execute the office of the President of Croatia due to absence, illness or vacations, the president may transfer his powers to the Speaker of the Croatian Parliament to act as a deputy. The president decides on the revocation of this authority and his return to the office. If the president is prevented from performing his duties for a longer period of time due to illness or other form of incapacitation, and especially if the president is unable to decide on a transfer of powers to a deputy, the Speaker of the parliament becomes the acting president, assuming presidential duty pursuant to a decision of the Constitutional Court, made upon request of the Government. [2]

In case of death or resignation submitted to the President of the Constitutional Court and communicated to the Speaker of the parliament, or in cases when the Constitutional Court decides to terminate the presidential term through impeachment, the Speaker of the parliament becomes acting president. In those circumstances, new legislation is countersigned by the prime minister instead of the president and a new presidential election must be held within 60 days. [2] This situation occurred after the death of Franjo Tuđman on 10 December 1999, [44] when Vlatko Pavletić became the acting president. [45] After the parliamentary elections of 2000, the role was transferred to Zlatko Tomčić, who filled the office until Stjepan Mesić was elected President of Croatia in 2000. [46]

Speakers of the parliament as acting presidents of Croatia
NameAssumed officeLeft officeNotesParty
Vlatko Pavletić 10 December 19992 February 2000Office expired when the 3rd Sabor was replaced by the 4th [45] HDZ
Zlatko Tomčić 2 February 200018 February 2000Replaced Pavletić after the 4th Sabor convened [46] HSS

Symbols

Standard of the President of Croatia flown at the entrance to the Presidential Palace grounds Predsjednicki dvori Zagreb glavni kolni ulaz.jpg
Standard of the President of Croatia flown at the entrance to the Presidential Palace grounds

Legislation defines the appearance and use of the Presidential Standard of Croatia as a symbol of the President of Croatia, and the appearance and use of the presidential sash as a symbol of honour of the office of the president. The presidential standard is a square, blue field with a thin border of alternating red and white squares on each side. In the centre of the blue field is the main shield of the coat of arms of Croatia with the historical arms of Croatia surrounding the main shield. From left to right, these are the oldest known coats of arms of Croatia, the Republic of Dubrovnik, Dalmatia, Istria and Slavonia, adorned with bands of gold, red and white stripes extending down vertically. Atop the shield there is a Croatian tricolour ribbon with golden letters RH that stand for the Republic of Croatia, executed in Roman square capitals. The presidential standard is flown on buildings of the Office of the President of Croatia, the residence of the president, transportation vehicles when in use by the president, and in other ceremonial occasions. [47] The presidential standard was designed by Miroslav Šutej in 1990. [48]

The presidential sash is a Croatian tricolour band, trimmed with gold and adorned with the coat of arms of Croatia, which is placed in a white field, with the tricolour at the front. The arms are bordered by oak branches on the left and olive branches on the right. The sash is worn diagonally, over the right shoulder, and is fastened using a square clasp trimmed with golden Croatian interlace. The sash is adorned with the arms used on the presidential standard, although without the ribbon used in the arms. The constitution specifies that the sash is worn on Statehood Day, during awards ceremonies, during the acceptance of letters of credence and in other ceremonial occasions. [47] The presidential sash was not in use since 2000 inauguration of Stjepan Mesić. [49]

Post-presidency

Former presidents of the Republic of Croatia are provided with an office and two staff members paid by the state once they leave the office. In addition, former presidents are assigned a driver, an official car and bodyguards. The government of Croatia is required to provide these benefits within 30 days following the end of the term of president, upon a president's personal request. [50] Stjepan Mesić's office is located in Grškovićeva Street in Zagreb. The office employs a public-relations advisor and a foreign policy advisor. [51] The office was established in 2010 and assigned an annual budget of 1.3 million kuna (c. 175,000 euro). [52] According to Mesić himself, his new office of the former president shall be at the disposal of Croatian companies to help them expand their market. [53] Since the office has been established, former president Mesić also receives foreign diplomats and visits abroad where he meets officials and delivers lectures on occasion. [54] [55]

The rights of the former presidents are defined by a parliamentary Act enacted in 2004, during the first term of Stjepan Mesić. [50] Before that act was enacted, the constitution provided that the former presidents shall become members of the Chambers of Counties of the Parliament of Croatia for life, unless otherwise requested by the president. [56] This was never exercised in practice, since Franjo Tuđman died in office and the Chamber of Counties was abolished before the end of the first term of Stjepan Mesić. [52]

Living former presidents

There are two living former Presidents of Croatia:

There is one living former Acting President of Croatia:

Timeline of Presidents (1990–present)

This is a graphical timeline listing of the Presidents of Croatia since the first multi-party elections in 1990.

Kolinda Grabar-KitarovićIvo JosipovićStjepan MesićFranjo TuđmanPresident of Croatia

See also

Related Research Articles

The politics of Croatia are defined by a parliamentary, representative democratic republic framework, where the Prime Minister of Croatia is the head of government in a multi-party system. Executive power is exercised by the Government and the President of Croatia. Legislative power is vested in the Croatian Parliament. The Judiciary is independent of the executive and the legislature. The parliament adopted the current Constitution of Croatia on 22 December 1990 and decided to declare independence from Yugoslavia on 25 May 1991. The Constitutional Decision on the Sovereignty and Independence of the Republic of Croatia came into effect on 8 October 1991. The constitution has since been amended several times. The first modern parties in the country developed in the middle of the 19th century, and their agenda and appeal changed, reflecting major social changes, such as the breakup of Austria-Hungary, the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes, dictatorship and social upheavals in the kingdom, World War II, the establishment of Communist rule and the breakup of the SFR Yugoslavia.

1997 Croatian presidential election presidential election

Presidential elections were held in Croatia on 15 June 1997. They were the second presidential elections held since independence in 1991. The result was a victory for incumbent president Franjo Tuđman, the leader of the Croatian Democratic Union party (HDZ), who received 61.40% of the vote and was re-elected to a second five year term. As Tuđman received a majority of the valid votes cast on election day there was no need for a run-off. President Tuđman received a plurality of the votes in 20 of Croatia's 21 counties, while Vlado Gotovac did so in Istria County.

The Government of Croatia, formally the Government of the Republic of Croatia, commonly abbreviated to Croatian Government, is the main executive branch of government in Croatia. It is led by the President of the Government, informally abbreviated to premier or prime minister. The prime minister is nominated by the President of the Republic from among those candidates who enjoy majority support in the Croatian Parliament; the candidate is then chosen by the Parliament. There are 20 other government members, serving as deputy prime ministers, government ministers or both; they are chosen by the prime minister and confirmed by the Parliament (Sabor). The Government of the Republic of Croatia exercises its executive powers in conformity with the Croatian Constitution and legislation enacted by the Croatian Parliament. The current government is led by Prime Minister Andrej Plenković.

Regular elections in Croatia are mandated by the Constitution and legislation enacted by Parliament. The presidency, Parliament, county prefects and assemblies, city and town mayors, and city and municipal councils are all elective offices. Since 1990, five presidential elections have been held. During the same period, nine parliamentary elections were also held. In addition, there were six nationwide local elections. Croatia has held two elections to elect 11 members of the European Parliament following its accession to the EU on 1 July 2013.

Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović President of Croatia

Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović is a Croatian politician and diplomat serving as the 4th and current President of Croatia since 2015. She is the first woman to be elected to the office since the first multi-party elections in 1990. At 46 years of age, she also became the youngest person to assume the presidency.

Dražen Budiša Croatian politician

Dražen Budiša is a retired Croatian politician who used to be leading opposition figure in the 1990s and a two-time presidential candidate. As leader of the Croatian Social Liberal Party through the 1990s he remains to date the only Leader of the Opposition not to have been from either the Croatian Democratic Union or Social Democratic Party.

Grand Order of Queen Jelena order

The Grand Order of Queen Jelena, or more fully the Grand Order of Queen Jelena with Sash and Morning Star, is an order of the Republic of Croatia. It was established in 1995. It ranks second in the Croatian order of precedence after the Grand Order of King Tomislav.

Grand Order of King Tomislav order

The Grand Order of King Tomislav, or officially the Grand Order of King Tomislav with Sash and Great Morning Star, is the highest state order of Croatia. It is usually awarded to top foreign officials for their contribution to the improvement of Croatia's good standing internationally as well as achievements in developing international relations between Croatia and their respective countries. It is awarded by the President of Croatia. The order has one class. It is named after King Tomislav of Croatia.

Ivo Josipović Croatian politician, third President of Croatia

Ivo Josipović is a Croatian jurist, composer and politician who served as the President of Croatia from 2010 to 2015.

St. Mark's Square is a square located in the old part of Zagreb, Croatia, called Gradec or Gornji grad.

Independence of Croatia the process which led to the independence of modern day croatia

The independence of Croatia was a process started with the changes in the political system and the constitutional changes in 1990 that transformed the Socialist Republic of Croatia into the Republic of Croatia, which in turn proclaimed the Christmas Constitution, and held the Croatian independence referendum, 1991.

Dušan Bilandžić was a Croatian historian and politician.

Imra Agotić Croatian general

Imra Agotić was a Croatian general who distinguished himself in the Croatian War of Independence.

2014–15 Croatian presidential election

Presidential elections were held in Croatia on 28 December 2014 and 11 January 2015, the sixth such elections since independence in 1991. Only four candidates contested the elections, the lowest number since 1997. Incumbent President Ivo Josipović, who had been elected as the candidate of the Social Democratic Party in 2009–10 but ran as an independent, was eligible to seek reelection for a second and final five-year term. As no candidate received 50% of the vote in the first round in December 2014, a run-off took place in January 2015 between the two candidates with the most votes; Josipović and Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović. Grabar-Kitarović went on to win the elections by a slim margin of 32,509 votes or 1.48%, making her Croatia's first female president.

Next Croatian presidential election

The next elections for the President of Croatia are due to take place by direct popular vote on a date between 21 December 2019 and 20 January 2020, with a second round to take place on a date between 4 January 2020 and 3 February 2020 between the two candidates with the largest number of votes in the first round. Namely, the Constitution of Croatia states that a presidential election must be held no more than 60 days and no less than 30 days before the expiration of the incumbent president's term. They will be the seventh presidential elections since the first direct ones were held in 1992.

Ivan Vilibor Sinčić Croatian political activist

Ivan Vilibor Sinčić, or simply Ivan Sinčić is a Croatian politician and anti-eviction activist who has been a Member of the Croatian Parliament since 2015 and was a candidate in the first round of the 2014 Croatian presidential election, coming in third with 16.42% of the vote, behind the incumbent Ivo Josipović and the ultimate winner of the election Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović. He is the chairman of Human Blockade.

Ankica Tuđman is the widow of Franjo Tuđman, the first President of an independent Croatia from 1991 until 1999, following the country's secession from SFR Yugoslavia, and the last President of the Presidency of SR Croatia as a constituent Yugoslav republic.

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