Saturday, 15 December 2018 | News today: 1

Chavkov: Spasovski is messing up MoI




The legal organizational and functional structure of the Macedonian Interior Ministry has been completely suspended and the division of political, strategic and tactic level is followed by defocusing the strategic priorities of the Ministry of Interior, additional deputy minister Mitko Chavkov said in an interview with “Republica”, speaking of the chaos, the legal insecurity, the internal setups in MoI since Oliver Spasovski took the helm.

In times when the state is facing a security risk because of the influx of migrants, there is a feeling that MoI, the pillar of the security, is not working, and the employees are communicate through press releases and interpretations of court decisions.

Chavkov: In light of the current security issues, the migrant crisis, we find ourselves in a very sensitive period of time, when there are security threats in terms of violent extremism, terrorism and migration processes, but I have to say that MoI works in a manner inadequate to efficiently and effectively address the risks and challenges we are facing.

I want to give describe MoI before the appointment of the technical minister and in that context, as a longtime employee at the ministry, for almost 30 years, I have passed all levels and I can say that I know the system, and I would not go historically, but since 2006 until the appointment of SDSM’s technical minister.

It was a period of intensive reforms in MoI, which yielded results. I am not mentioning this by accident because the Przino Agreement was preceded by many speculations and claims for the alleged partisation and politicization of the ministry and not just before the arrival of Spasovski. Even after he came he continued with such rhetoric and provides such qualifications.

But the situation is completely different, I could refute his claims here with concrete facts.

OSCE has been conducting extensive surveys on citizens’ trust in the police for twelve years. Since 2008 we have a continued increase of the citizens’ trust in the work of the police, and I can freely say that the indicators are impressive because they are above the average in the EU countries.

Another indicator are the global reports by the US State Department on the capacity of the countries in eradicating and combating human trafficking. Macedonia for many years has been in the first group of countries with developed capacities, in the company of several EU countries, the UK, Finland, Italy, France, Germany, or moreover in the company of the US.

Let me continue with the indicators that MoI is doing its job as it should, through numerous results achieved internationally, in terms of international police cooperation and the fight against organized crime groups. We have received awards for fight against cybercrime, we have been respectable partner as MoI to many police services in the EU, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), we have results and recognitions for police actions to combat drug trafficking carried out with other European police forces.

I will not refer to all the achievements in the fight against organized crime and terrorism historically, I will mention only actions “Divo Naselje” and “Cell”, which are MoI’s latest of such magnitude and I think that the ministry is credited for keeping the security in the country, which was called into question, especially with the “Divo Naselje” case, but the threats and intentions to destabilize the country were prevented by the efficient and effective energetic action of the police.

And in compliance with the Przino Agreement, instead an expert, comes SDSM’s Secretary General, who starts to bring and employ people from the party, promotes employees without respecting MoI’s career advancement system, while MoI’s employees and the police are sending messages of violence to the public. What effect has all that and what can be done to prevent it?

I referred to the period before Spasovski’s arrival on purpose. Now, practically, we can see a different transitional period. The fact that the Secretary General took the position, I thought and I assessed that there will be significant burden on the additional political responsibility because it is SDSM’s Secretary General, the largest opposition party. From the very position Spasovski had to be careful with all the procedures and actions undertaken. I expected actions in the spirit of the Przino Agreement, in establishing a trust in society, but instead, to my surprise, opposite things happened.

Is MoI now in order?

Chavkov: I have to tell you that MoI is not in order because the person who should establish and ensure order is the generator of chaos, disorder, legal uncertainty. In this context, I will start from his first move when he took the minister position. The first decision was revoking the authorizations of the directors of the Public Security Bureau and the Administration for Security and Counterintelligence, as well as the authorizations of the heads of the regional departments of the ministry.

It was the first step that for me was a clear indication that things will not go right. The second step was his surrounding with police advisers, practically, with persons who are members of SDSM. He immediately started with partisation of MoI by recruiting their party activists, who outside the system for managing human resources were placed on various inadequate positions by jumping a few positions up. Thus, practically, they made a mess. The organization, structure and operation of MoI is laid down by the Law on Internal Affairs. The law clearly and unequivocally stipulates that the operation of MoI has three levels. Political level – the minister and his advisers; strategic level – directors of the Public Security Bureau, the Administration for Security and Counterintelligence; and operational-tactical level through the regional sector of the ministry. So, a clear system of decentralization, which has been completely disrupted by direct interference personally by the minister, particularly in operational and tactical issues. Interfering in various investigations and in dealing with calling people who face charges over some cases, so here we have information that that call is followed by certain threats, and not to mention … that is, practically, generating chaos. Within the very top of MoI’s administration. It cannot lead to good because it creates legal uncertainty among the employees. They illegally changed five heads of regional centers of the ministry, and in their position placed people that do not fit the legal requirements. They jump several hierarchical levels up just to be appointed heads of regional centers. Kumanovo police officer was appointed head of the regional center. SDSM activist was appointed in Skopje, which I think was hired as Sekerinska’s security in some of the elections. You expect de-partisation from him? Because they claim that VMRO has made MoI partisan, which is not true. The previous indicators I mentioned show exactly the opposite. That MoI is professional.

Do you think the elections will put an end to what you described as chaos in MoI?

Chavkov: I think the elections are only a postulate for returning the state back on track and returning MoI on the right track on which it was earlier and I am convinced that after this preconditions for overcoming the weaknesses that existed in MoI’s system, which were used and abused by a subversive criminal structure of people, will be created. We have seen that SDSM’s members abused the system of the Administration for Security and Counterintelligence, and I would like not to talk further about that because a court procedure is in progress, but the same subversive criminal structure practically was the generator of a similar activity in 2001 with the “Big Ear ” affair.

In that context, I think that only elections will create appropriate postulates to overcome these difficulties and to continue building MoI’s system, overcoming all weaknesses and strengthening all capacities in all segments of MoI’s activities.

By: Naum Stoilkovski

Photo: Aleksandar Ivanovski