Following the incident with the Macedonian national anthem, another dispute regarding Goce Delcev is brewing. Motorists who were using the new Skopje – Stip highway report that there is not a single sign depicting hs name – the Goce Delcev highway.
Delcev famously taught and operated out of Stip and using his name for the newest Macedonian highway was seen as a fitting tribute. But the grand opening, weeks after it was unoffically opened and easily a year after the highway was finished, came at a time when Macedonia and Bulgaria are disputing Delcev and his nationality.
Zoran Zaev held an opening ceremony for the highway on Saturday, which prompted fierce criticism from the VMRO party and its exiled former leader Nikola Gruevski, who reminded Zaev how he long criticized the construction and does all he can to arrest all the actual builders of the highway, made with a Chinese state credit line. Zaev also renamed the main north – south highway, from Alexander the Great into “Friendship”, in order to placate Greece. His Government was quick to put up signs with the new name of that highway, but with the level of tensions with Bulgaria, it left the Goce Delcev highway unmarked.
The situation is expected to repeat itself with the new Stip – Kocani motorway, which is named after another VMRO leader – Todor Aleksandrov, who is also claimed by and honored in Bulgaria.