A report from state construction inspectors submitted to the Government that details unlawful commercial builds in the old Skopje bazaar was ignored by the Government and today Prime Minister Zoran Zaev confirmed that it will not be acted upon. This comes after the Government dramatically demolished an illegal build in front of the Mavrovka shopping mall – the same wider area of the old bazaar – an act that was declared a restoration of the rule of law by the Zaev regime.

Zaev was asked today about the report and the violations of law and municipal acts that were registered in it. When asked whether the Government will similarly assist to the Cair municipality, which is visibly unprepared to act, Zaev said an action on his part would “provoke other legal issues”. It is true that the Government has no businesses interfering municipal ordered demolitions, and the Zaev regime has happily prosecuted its political opponents such as former Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski and former Transportation Minister Mile Janakieski for allegedly ordering the demolition of a residential complex built unlawfully by a controversial businessman. But that was no obstacle for Zaev to order the demolition of the Mavrovka build.

Ironically, one of the unlawfully built clubs is the Hurem restaurant/shisha bar, which greatly expanded an existing club in a distinct section of the bazaar. Before it became a shisha bar, the location housed Menada, a leftist club that was the gathering ground of Zaev’s supporters in the NGO sector. Menada would host events in which prominent leftist activists would express their support for Zaev’s 2015 Colored Revolution and hold training events for protesters. Its closure, shortly after the “revolution” was successful and Zaev grabbed power in 2017, caused outrage in leftist circles and its subsequent illegal expansion and conversion into a shisha bar is seen as a symbol of Zaev’s failure to deliver on his rule of law promises.