Dimitar Kovacevski, the candidate handpicked by Zoran Zaev to lead his SDSM party, met with supporters today in his hometown of Kumanovo, where his father was Mayor.

Kovacevski came supported by Interior Minister Oliver Spasovski, who earlier this year fought a bitter fight with Kumanovo Mayor Maksim Dimitrievski to control this important SDSM party branch. He was also supported by former intelligence chief Mile Zecevic, who entertained the idea of challenging Kovacevski for the party leadership, and is now apparently pushed by Zaev to show his loyalty to Kovacevski by following him across the country.

Spasovski said that Kovacevski will be a responsible leader for the party and will “ensure the continuity for our successful policies, building our society based on social-democratic values”.

Kovacevski faces two challenges for the party-wide elections on December 12th. One is from disgraced former Vice President of the party Frosina Remenski, who is embroiled in the major Racket scandal. But the other challenge will gauge the level of support Radmila Sekerinska enjoys in the party – it comes from her loyalist Jovan Despotovski, and could potentially upset relations in the party.