Thursday, 14 December 2017 | News today: 14

MP Topuzova-Karevska: Why is Zaev concealing evidence?

If one has solid evidence of any crime, corruption, abuse, causing harm to the public interest, violating the interethnic relations and related actions by the government, they should immediately bring such evidence before the public eye, otherwise a question arises as to why the evidence is being concealed, for what purpose and for whose use, asks Roza Topuzova-Karevska, LDP MP who "threw off" the boycott and returned to Parliament

The procedure for reviewing MPs attendance in Parliament has begun. Final decision on stripping mandates of opposition MPs who are boycotting will be made with two-third majority vote in Parliament. What kind of a result are you expecting?

Topuzova-Karevska: It is a fact the Parliament is not working in its full composition now, hence no normal atmosphere. The opposition has a very significant role in parliamentary democracy. Its primary task is to closely monitor the work of the executive government, detect its inconsistencies, to criticize bad policies, to protect citizens’ interests and offer solutions to issues. When the opposition is absent, the Government is comfortable when practicing its power, it proposes disputable legal solutions and becomes irresponsible when implementing the laws. It is true the Parliament has initiated the legal rules of procedure regarding MPs attendance, but I cannot anticipate the outcome in such an absurd situation. It is concerning the entire public deals with the MPs resignations for seven months now, while people face hard life daily, filled with numerous problems and laws are being passed in Parliament without the public having the chance to hear critics’ opinion on them. In my opinion, political will and responsibility are required to get out of that non-sense situation.

In the Parliament, you are officially MP of the Liberal-Democrat Party (LDP). Solza Grceva and Ljubica Buralieva are registered as independent MPs. By that, LDP, although it says it is boycotting, is actually represented in the Parliament. So, whose interest do you represent, do you have any coordination with the party headquarters?

Topuzova-Karevska: I have not been excluded from LDP just because the statute does not allow that, but the party president state I must not represent LDP’s positions in the Parliament. I do not know if he has written the announced letter to Parliament Speaker Veljanoski to state that, , but I know that nobody can alter my political belief. Not just me, but all members of Parliament, should represent interests of the people. I will state one example: at a MPs Q&A session, I was the first to speak out loud on the alarming and worrying situation of the hospital in Prilep. Over 130.000 citizens rely on healthcare services by that hospital and over 130 doctors and medical staff are employed there. They are all facing the same problems and bad working conditions, regardless of their party or ethnic affiliations. Hospitals and other public institutions belong to all citizens, to both decided and undecided in terms of party affiliation. It is their interests I represent and I am committed to solving issues they are faced with daily.

Your leader Andrej Zernovski has confirmed the class divisions and the broken unity in the opposition. How many of your colleagues do you think could “leave SDSM’s sinking ship”? How many people from LDP might join you – by number, not necessarily by name?

Topuzova-Karevska: I do not communicate with anyone from the party anymore and I have no information what will the other two MPs from LDP do. If LDP’s leader said the unity in the opposition was broken, it is logical that he knows best the relationship between the partners in the coalition, and only he can give you the answer.

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Is LDP capable of leading an independent policy without its “big brother” SDSM? Some people claim that you could take over the primacy even before the elections.

Topuzova-Karevska: LDP is a party with strong individuals, with a clear vision of Macedonia and, of course, has the capacity to lead an independent policy. The party’s independent performance in the 2011 elections was focused on presenting its profile, but, it is a fact that the political stage in Macedonia is still strictly divided between two major parties, SDSM and VMRO-DPMNE respectively (I am referring to the Macedonian bloc). Back then the citizens failed to recognize LDP’s political offer and platform. Despite the good electoral programme, the party, unfortunately, suffered defeat. For three years, the party operated outside Parliament, but skillfully and successfully detected and indicated the wrong policies of the government and presented a relevant factor in Macedonia’s politics. I think it is not modest to speak about primacy, but , sure, it could play a more important role in policy-making.

The affair announcements by SDSM leadership are taking too long. And the game of nerves in the opposition is taking even longer. Do you expect, as so far announced, an affair that could really change the power on the political stage?

Topuzova-Karevska: I think that if one has solid evidence of any crime, corruption, abuse, causing harm to the public interest, violating the interethnic relations and related actions by the government, they should immediately bring such evidence before the public eye, otherwise a question arises as to why the evidence is being concealed, for what purpose and for whose use.

As a MP for a number of years, a participant in policy making in the country, do you now see an opportunity for technical government? Do you see the option that the leaders of the opposition, with no casualties, would “get out” of the impasse they are facing, by returning to Parliament, but, above all, considering the fact that there is no room for “technical government”?

Topuzova-Karevska: My position was expressed in my actions: I though then and I think now that all the problems that our country is facing can be resolved through dialogue and, above all, in the institutions of the system. A strong message for the correctness of the decision was sent by the European Ambassador Aivo Orav, who personally handed us the EC report on Macedonia’s progress, an act that legitimize us, the three MPs, as opposition MPs. At a recent meeting with the Deputy Chief of Western Balkans Mission, and his associate, Johannes Viereck we got strong, unwavering support for our activities in Parliament. Therefore, the message is clear how the EU and the whole democratic world see the resolution of the crisis. On the other hand, if the opposition believes that a technical government is the only condition to start negotiations, neglecting the essential requirements for conducting the census and freedom of the media, and the government is decisive that the victory with 200 thousand votes leaves no room for a technical government, then the exit from the political crisis, where Macedonia will be the biggest victim, is not to be expected any time soon.

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By: Naum Stoilkovski