Today the Government sent out orders to dozens of public institutions ordering them to change the signs they have posted and to begin using the name “Republic of North Macedonia” in the new signs.
The institutions are also ordered to review their web sites and to scrub the name Republic of Macedonia from them.
The list includes iconic institutions such as the Macedonian Opera and Ballet, which will now be known as the “National Opera and Ballet”. The Macedonian Radio Television would avoid the dreaded North Macedonian Radio Television – SMRT acronym – which translates as “death” in Macedonian, and would be known as the National Radio Television, and the National Gallery of Macedonia would, under this order, have to rename itself into the “National gallery of the Republic of North Macedonia Skopje”.
This flies in the face of the media guidelines which the Foreign Ministry recently published, under which the public was assured that the adjective Macedonian will remain in use for the Macedonian people. Replacing Macedonian with National may be a way to avoid using “North Macedonian” but it also removes the adjective Macedonian and makes it unclear which nation is the institution representing.
The Macedonian National Theater is one of the few institutions which would remain using the adjective Macedonian, but would have to qualify it with a complex full name: “Republic of North Macedonia, National Institution MACEDONIAN NATIONAL THEATER Skopje”.