Thursday, 14 December 2017 | News today: 14

Cvetkovski: Zaev has probably ordered the wiretapping

Viktor Cvetkovski has filed charges against SDSM and Zoran Zaev for violation of privacy by publishing a telephone conversation. The former fellow member of SDSM and personal friend of Zaev believes he ordered the wiretapping

Viktor Cvetkovski has felt SDSM’s revenge on his own back –  both when he was expelled from the party due to disagreements with Zoran Damjanovski’s policy and when he run as an independent candidate in Kumanovo. We started the conversation with the criminal charges filed against SDSM.

CVETKOVSKI: The criminal charges were filed to the Public Prosecutor’s Office in Kumanovo since the event occurred in Kumanovo, SDSM published the conversation in Kumanovo. I filed the charges for a single cause, it intrudes on my privacy. The law regulates it, the Constitution regulates it. The criminal charges are against the legal entity SDSM, the person in charge Zoran Zaev and for the authorized person Martin Kostovski, who, actually, published the conversation between me and the Interior Minister Gordana Jankulovska. That conversation, according to my assumption, dates back to 2013 between the two election rounds, when we talked about possible cooperation between the people who stood behind me as an independent candidate and VMRO-DPMNE. Then we also spoke with SDSM for possible cooperation because we as an independent group “when if not now”achieved a result that did not allow me to get into the second round, but we won two mandates in the municipal council.

Will you require verification of the authenticity of the conversation or conversations?

CVETKOVSKI: Of course, I already pointed out that Jankulovska and I talked on the phone only in that period and never more, so the assumption is that the conversations took place in that period. The authenticity will be verified in the procedure I initiated with the criminal charges. I believe in the institutions in the Republic of Macedonia and as damaged in this process I believe that this procedure following the criminal charges will be pushed through until the end.

We are talking about the period between 2012 and 2013, when you were expelled from SDSM while you held senior party position. Why were you expelled?

CVETKOVSKI: I remember 2012 for that. I was a member of the highest party body, the Executive Board. I was first expelled on July 6, some people in SDSM probably wanted to discipline me, which proved to be true. I was expelled by the municipal organization, contrary to the Statute, arguing that I did not respect their positions, while, actually, I voted against decisions that were contrary to the interests of the citizens of Kumanovo. Then again on December 15 I was expelled together with Vlado Buckovski and Dimitar Buzlevski because of the announcement of my candidacy. Literally, I was forcibly expelled from the party. They wanted me out of SDSM, and now they are annoyed that I am out of SDSM. Now when they have me as a political opponent.

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In 2013, in an interview with “Republika” you indicated to the irresponsible work of Damjanovski without capital projects, spending public money … What is the situation now?

CVETKOVSKI: Worse. Damjanovski has entered the third year of the third term. That interview was held ahead of the local elections, a few months after the expulsion. Still no capital projects, the municipality regresses infrastructurallysocially, in all aspects, generally, living in Kumanovo is at very low level. If SDSM and Damjanovski got away in the last elections, we know how they managed to secure their term, if you conduct a survey now, anyone, without thinking, will tell you that in the next election SDSM will not get the support in Kumanovo. I say this two years before the elections, I will see you after the elections, when SDSM will lose in the first round.

Damjanovski announced charges against you for slander and emotional distress because of, as he says, your rough lies, and announced that he will require from real evidence of the accusations. You are a lawyer, do you have real evidence?

CVETKOVSKI: Obviously, Damjanovski forgets that I am a lawyer and that I have real evidence of all say. I stand behind all the figures. I am ready and can’t wait to see him in court. The second thing I would like to emphasize is that he forgets that at the debates we held in 2013 he respected me for my fair play, my correctness, expecting that I will say and show a lot of things.

Is there revanchism?

CVETKOVSKI: Of course, there is. Even today, there are proceedings before court. There is a complaint in process referring to a change of workplace of our candidate of the independent list, now vice president of GROM in Kumanovo. Damjanovski changed a director of a nursing home because the lady gave me support, he changed several people in PE Vodovod with no procedure just because of the support they gave me.  The revanchism continued when GROM started operating. The Director of PE Vodovod was an observer at the polling stations where the concentration of Roma people is greatest. The only task as director, where he has employed many Roma people, was to control them not to vote, expecting they would vote for me as a candidate of GROM in the parliamentary elections in 2014. The example that Damjanovski gives in Kumanovo, and it is not otherwise in Strumica or in Center municipality, but much worse than the examples given by SDSM in statements or during the release of the “bombs”. Therefore, I and Jakimovski urge them to publish the conversations that they had with us or the others in their environment. For no other reason but to hear what kind of vocabulary they are using, for revanchism and for everything they do.

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Your message was: “The political situation SDSM has imposed caused huge unrest with citizens and, as times goes by, we all begin to wonder what is the truth SDSM is publishing”.

CVETKOVSKI: If SDSM publishes their “truth”, that will be a shock for Macedonia. The act itself, the action, it is open, we constantly see criminal charges one after another and it is certain that it will eventually be determined who has orchestrated the wiretapping. But, publishing is also a crime. Who granted them the right to publish all kinds of things?

Political determination is my own privacy, who I will vote for, who will I cooperate with in politics, is my constitutional right, not SDSM’s right. I am talking on my behalf and on behalf of all those who will come out as aggrieved parties. This a process no one can allow. It will be determined who has been wiretapping, but we witness daily who is publishing. No one has given him the right to fight in politics by using crime. And that is a crime, according to Article 151, in which ‘publishing’ is regulated with Line 2.

That is why SDSM members also have second thoughts. In Kumanovo, they have filled the hall of the former committee, 312 spots. They have brought employees from public enterprises and the municipality. SDSM members are aware what their leadership is doing is unacceptable.

What are your relations with Zaev like?

CVETKOVSKI: I am ready to debate on political relations, but, as for human relations – they have been aggravated. He is one of the persons I have had a chance to work with, to share same opinions. Up until my exclusion from SDSM. He gave himself the right to describe me and the other two members who were excluded on TV as “paid, bought, blackmailed”. In my opinion, when some people have cooperated, shared many mutual things in SDSM, especially when they know each other, saying such thing is the last thing that should cross one’s mind. I am saying it as a human, I cannot forgive him that because political goals cannot aggravate human relations. If we were friends until yesterday, I cannot get over it.

To what extend are your relations aggravated because of the ‘bombs’?

CVETKOVSKI: Many relations will be aggravated. Zaev and the entire leadership should bear responsibility for it. Look at just how many people are missing on those press conferences, although they are part of the leadership, the negotiating team, many SDSM bodies. Zaev feels it, that the entire situation will melt down to nothing, that he did not achieve the effects he has been announcing. Lacking the support of the entire SDSM membership, he is literally fighting to preserve his party position. He is far from winning the government. By assigning tasks to municipal members, he keeps up the stamina of municipal organizations, therefore there is no room for internal turmoils, signatures, delegates meetings, shift in leadership. Zaev’s goal is to literally preserve his position in the party. Because this is not the way to win the government, with crime – publishing recordings. And as things are going, it would eventually turn out that he has ordered the wiretapping himself.

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Do you think Zaev or SDSM have ordered the wiretapping?

CVETKOVSKI: That, too, is a possible scenario. But, it will be determined through a legit process. Just analyze whose conversations have been recorded! It is the prime minister, ministers of interior affairs, finances, transport and communications, the director of state security agency and all those who talked to them. Such locating of persons can obviously also be done without some special technical opportunities. But, let’s leave that to the authorities to determine.

Are further abuses and blackmails with the recordings possible? Businessmen, politicians, activists…

CVETKOVSKI: That is the biggest damage. Privacy is one the biggest constitutional values. Such recordings definitely enter the area of invasion of privacy and other additional crimes. There will always be individuals who will abuse these recordings. Does it even make sense for Zaev to decide to use criminal action to try to stabilize or destabilize the Republic of Macedonia – to take over the government or to remain opposition? If Zaev wants to catch voters’ attention, than why can’t they also wiretap and go to businessmen and politicians? That is exactly my motive to file criminal charges – to show that he cannot play games with privacy.

Zaev asked for “Putsch” investigation to be stopped in the Public Prosecutor’s Office. Is that possible?

CVETKOVSKI: Any stopping of this procedure can be done with political willingness of the state, which requires Parliament majority. The legislative body can adopt an amnesty, and the president can pardon a person. Those are the political functions. In case perpetrators of this crime are amnestied or pardoned, that would be a legal precedent, it will be one of the biggest mistakes in the history of Macedonia. We are dealing with such affairs every ten years. We know that contemporary, proven democratic countries have also been in situations like these where they had to resolve such affairs and there have always been legal resolutions. That should be an example for Macedonia, as well. This is the third or forth time we are dealing with wiretapping and I think the country needs to be rigorous for citizens to feel protected and to be sure that no one will wiretap and publish their conversations in future. That is why I insist on legal, not political resolution.

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By: Naum Stoilkovski

Photo: Republika