Thursday, 14 December 2017 | News today: 14

Towards overcoming the crisis

Timco-Mucunski-90x120

Timco Mucunski

For a longer period of time, the opposition in the Republic of Macedonia has been deliberately, clearly and openly creating conditions that led to the creation of a serious political crisis which inflicts serious harm to the state, the citizens and their interests. The first stone of deepening the crisis between the government and the opposition were the events of December 2013, followed by last year’s early parliamentary and regular presidential elections in which were included more coalitions and almost all political parties. In terms of elections, all citizens probably remember, but not it is not bad to remember that according to the final report of the Election Observation Mission of OSCE / ODIHR in 2014, the same were assessed as complying with the electoral process and OSCE commitments and other international standards for democratic elections, as well as national regulations. According to the both statements over the preliminary findings and conclusions issued after each round, the presidential and early parliamentary elections were effectively enforced, including the election day. According to the same report the candidates were able to conduct the election campaign, and the freedom of assembly and association was respected. Furthermore the report notes several observations that need to be given serious consideration, with a view to removing them as quickly as possible, regardless of the fact that they are not of such character as to raise the question of legality and legitimacy of the results of the last elections. In the specified context it is also good to remember that the coalition “For Better Macedonia” in the last elections won with a difference of more than 200,000 votes , which was a clear and unambiguous message of the voters to the political parties, to whom and with what confidence they leave the government, functioning and administration of the state.

The non-recognition of the election results and the refusal of the opposition lawmakers to attend and participate in the sessions of the Macedonian Parliament, as well as the several- month publication of illegally obtained wiretapped conversations of government officials and journalists further tighten the political crisis and inevitably imposed the need of opening an extraordinary and extra-institutional negotiation process to overcome the same. The negative consequences for the state of such clear boycott by the opposition are long and deep, and the damages are yet to be determined.

Under constant and strong pressure of the opposition in the mediation process for ensuring political dialogue to resolve the political crisis the international community has been gradually involved, which has shown remarkable level of interest to help achieve an appropriate solution and to enable the Republic of Macedonia to firmly continue the Euro-Atlantic integration path and the overall political, economic and social development of the country.

When we thought that the pressure and the skills of the European diplomacy and the international community provide adequate results and that all political parties in the country have reached consensus on the need for confirmation of the strategic foreign policy goals, as well as the acceptance to hold early parliamentary elections by the end of April 2016, for a moment, as if the ball has stopped again in the middle of the field. Namely,  a common political and diplomatic correct statement of the Commissioner Johannes Hahn in Washington was followed by a statement of the leader of the Macedonian opposition, which accuses the EU Commissioner of being bias in the negotiating process and said he is withdrawing from it. Several hours later (after a telephone conversation between the opposition leader and EU Commissioner Hahn), the main opposition party issued a statement and announced the presence of their representatives within the extended negotiation process in Brussels, which relativizes their intention to serious approach to political dialogue.

It should be also emphasized that conditioning throughout the negotiation process contributes to its undue delay, thus inflicting direct damage to the involved countries in the political crisis, concerning the citizens, seriously affecting the overall economic processes in the country, jeopardizing our monetary, financial and fiscal stability, putting the investors in Macedonia in an awkward situation and deterring those who in the future plan to invest their capital here, negatively affecting the perception of Macedonia and the growth in the number of tourists from abroad.

We should certainly ask ourselves the question whether high level of international mediation was necessary in the resolution of this autochthonous political crisis? Could it be because the findings and conclusions expressed by the foreigners have a higher degree of persuasiveness and inspire more confidence?

I ask the questions, why has the international community repeatedly stressed that the return of the opposition in Parliament is crucial for a normal beginning of institutional dialogue (which will probably happen), that it is necessary to proceed with amendments to legislation about the electoral process and make changes in the voting list (nobody in the country is opposing that procedure) and finally about the research of the work and possibly the responsibility of the state authorities, security services and abuse of government officials about current affairs (in functional Parliament there are no obstacles to form appropriate Inquiry Committees).

Now a few words about the so-called. transition period, which so far none of the relevant factors of the international community has explained the thesis that it automatically means the formation of a transitional (transient, technical, concentrative etc.) government. While this question will obviously be subject within the further political dialogue in Brussels and at home, however it should be clear that it should not be a condition without whose fulfillment is not possible progress in the negotiations, nor a brake on timely and correct fulfillment of what has already been, and what will be negotiated and should be fulfilled to holding the next early parliamentary elections.

At the same time all reasonable messages from outside and inside refer to the notion that the political crisis must be separated from the proper legal resolution of most of the criminal charges, open criminal proceedings and court cases related to the “Coup” affair and other cases. In the said context and in the process of resolving such cases it is required full respect towards the principles of independence, legality, legitimacy, legality and high level of expertise in the application of the Constitution and the laws of the Republic of Macedonia.

Regardless of the fact whether the opposition likes the objectives or not and clear guidance given by the representatives of the European Union, who as such are basically supported by previously performed persistent consultations with European political leaders and many experts available to the European Commission, the Macedonian opposition will certainly need to act responsibly, to face real challenges, and solve the problems in their own ranks, which obviously exist for a longer period of time.

It is politically incorrect and disrespectful to cover inability with inappropriate attacks and attempts to discredit the representatives of the international community, only because their proposals for overcoming the political crisis in the country are not in accordance with your understanding of the situation and not fully correspond with the views of a particular group or individuals within the political party, especially if it has not established an appropriate strategy and the concept of performance.

Perhaps it is now the right time to stop the constant attacks on the legitimacy of the political leaders, public authorities and other institutions by the media who unwittingly serve the purposes of those who do not want the best for our country. It is particularly important to happen as soon as possible, because the Macedonian citizens do not deserve to be hostages of the political and moral crisis, and all their discussions to always turn into a political debate instead of being a cultural conversation about family, work engagement, education, culture, sport and entertainment.

It is high time to put an end to this political party, and the Republic of Macedonia to be a stable factor in the international arena, to be highlighted as the most successful story with a high degree of domestic consolidation, to continue building good relations with neighbors,  to emphasizes ethnic and inter-religious cohesion with ease, to be an example of successfully carried out political, economic, financial and social reforms, which performance in general will help us quickly and efficiently to achieve our strategic foreign policy goals and priorities.