In an Alsat TV interview, Zoran Zaev promised that during the next amending of the Constitution, the 2001 formula of giving greater political weight to a community that constitutes over 20 percent of the population will be amended – and the Albanian community will be named directly.

The hard fought formula followed months of fighting in the 2001 insurgency, and was supposed to prevent the establishment of Macedonia as a bi-national would-be federation, even as it made clear that it is the Albanian community that will receive preferential access to public sector hiring and greater weight than other members of Parliament. But Albanian politicians have demanded that the 2001 Ohrid Treaty is revised and the “over 20 percent” formula is replaced with the Albanian nation, especially given fears that the Albanians will emigrate themselves below the 20 percent mark, or that some other community could in the future achieve the same share of the population.

During the next opening of the Constitution, we know that the 20 percent of the state are the Albanians. We had no right to do it the last time, because we opened the Constitution, there was a reason, the Prespa Treaty. When time comes for any other reason that we open the Constitution the 20 percent will be replaced with Albanians. We know that the Albanians are the 20 percent, there are no other 20 percent in this country, Zaev said.

On another very difficult issue with the Albanian voters – the Tetovo hospital fire in which 14 people – most of them Albanians – we burnt alive, Zaev insisted that he could not accept the resignations of Healthcare Minister Venko Filipce and his deputy Ilir Hasani because there is no time to find other qualified people. “We were concerned with how the system will go on”, Zaev claimed.