The SDSM party strongly condemned the decision by Kumanovo Mayor Maksim Dimitrievski to launch an independent bid for a second term. Dimitrievski was elected on the SDSM ticket in 2017, but has frequently criticized the party, and its leader Zoran Zaev, especially for his mishandling of the coronavirus pandemic and the concessions on national identity issues.

Dimitrievski’s move now splits the SDSM camp in Kumanovo, and creates an opening for the VMRO-DPMNE candidate Toni Mihajlovski.

SDSM will give the best possible offer to the citizens of Kumanovo. The name of our mayoral candidate and the names on the list for the Council will be known soon. Dimitrievski’s decision makes it easier on the voters – he turned his back on the democratic and progressive option, on the SDSM members and our base, and therefore he can’t be the best option fo the city, SDSM said in a statement, denouncing its former official.