Why should the crisis end only if VMRO-DPMNE formed the new government?

 

After the failure of the party’s leader, Nikola Gruevski, to form a parliamentary majority and the new government, VMRO-DPMNE, the party whose cadres lead the interim government and the party that also won 51 seats in the new of the Parliament of the Republic of Macedonia, gave the following press release/statement which we consider as inconsistent:

VMRO-DPMNE informs the public that a coalition agreement with DUI hasn’t been achieved.

VMRO-DPMNE, together with the coalition For Better Macedonia, as the winner of the last elections that received the largest support from the citizens and won the largest number of votes and seats, thinks that the formation of government should lead toward the end of the political crisis instead of deepening it and considers that new elections would be the wisest solution in terms of overcoming the crisis and putting the reform priorities in first line.

Every other solution will only bring new conflicts and problems in the already divided society and it won’t be in favor of the sustainability and accomplishment of anybody’s program goals.

Apparently, somebody wants to neglect the will of the majority of citizens and to push Macedonia in some new, uncertain stage of its development. VMRO-DPMNE sticks to its principled positions regarding the strategic issues of state and national interest and the Proclamation adopted on 17 December 2016.

[Source: ВМРО-ДПМНЕ, веб, Date: 29 January 2017]

 

 

EXPLANATION:

We consider VMRO-DPMNE’s statement/press release as inconsistent, due to multiple reasons, and here we are going to give only several of them.

First, VMRO-DPMNE formally won the most votes on the elections, but that doesn’t mean that it can be de facto considered a winner, because the difference between the first and the second party, the opposition party SDSM, is just 17 thousand votes, or 1.4 percent or just two seats more, i.e. 51 vs 49 seats. This is important because the Constitution of the Republic of Macedonia doesn’t have an item that deals with the terms winner and defeated.

Second, in regard to the first, the Constitution (Article 90) prescribes that the mandate is entrusted to:

candidate from the party or parties which has/have a majority in the Assembly. 

Within 20 days from the day of being entrusted with the mandate, the mandatee submits a programme to the Assembly and proposes the composition of the Government.

The Government is elected by the Assembly on the proposal of the mandatee and on the basis of the programme by a majority vote of the total number of Representatives.

This de facto means that the one who has 61 seats, i.e. absolute majority, should be entrusted with the mandate, because only such majority can form the government. This is clearly confirmed by Paragraph two from the Article 90 of the Constitution of RM, although the professor at the Faculty of Law “Iustinianus Primus” in Skopje, Tatjana Karakamisheva and her colleague, the professor Vlado Popovski, claim differently.

However, at least three other professors of Constitutional Law, professor Svetomir Shkarikj, professor Zemri Elezi, professor Bekim Kadriu, as well as several former constitutional judges believe that: 1) the mandate should have been entrusted if the President of RM, Gjorge Ivanov, had made consultations or if the parties had delivered assurance of capability for forming a majority within 10 days; 2) if the mandatee hasn’t managed to form the government, he/she should return the mandate and Ivanov should entrust the party that has second largest number of seats with the mandate, as a party that has the highest chances to form a majority. At last, the European democratic experience should not be forgotten, and the former mediator in the Pržino process, Peter Vanhoutte, reminds us to it with his latest comment on the occurrences in RM by saying that the Constitution is clear:

Though the Constitution is not detailed about it, it is clear that, in line with internationally accepted democratic standards, this mandate should now be given to the second party in line. … Appointing now someone else from the same party would be a grave mistake, against the spirit of the Constitution, against democratic standards, and it would only result in further delays – says Peter Vanhoutte, among the other things.

Third, why every other solution (except new elections) would lead toward deepening instead of ending the crisis, as VMRO-DPMNE claims? Let’s presume that last Sunday they managed to form the government in coalition with DUI, eventually with two more MPs from DPA and one to three MPs from the Alliance of Albanians. Again, we would’ve had a government of 61, 63 or maximum 66 MPs. But they failed. Why the other parliamentary majority, which theoretically can count 69 MPs, and practically the same number of MPs as DUI and VMRO-DPMNE have planned, would lead to “deepening of the crisis”? It turns out that the crisis will end only if VMRO-DPMNE and DUI remain in power, and every other option without VMRO-DPMNE will mean new crisis….

Fourth, after many years of fierce crisis, VMRO-DPMNE is still playing inconsistently by not naming things loud and clear, as stated in the penultimate last sentence of the statement: “Apparently somebody” (Who?), “neglect the will of the majority” (albeit the majority in this situation is debatable), etc.

And finally, let us remind to the party’s Proclamation from 17 December 2016, read in front of the State Election Commission by the leader Nikola Gruevski. Out of the five items in the Proclamation, he announced at least two and a half to three items that don’t show willingness for reforms or ending the crisis: 1) That he leaves the format of negotiations between parties outside the Parliament; 2) That he starts a battle with the civil society sector considered as dangerous external and internal enemy related to George Soros (and then it became obvious that he considers SDSM as “Soros’ pawn”) and 3) VMRO-DPMNE will not accept non-standard or hybrid solutions in any sector in the future, unless such solutions are not accepted by EU member states (regarding every eventual new solution envisioned as reform in the judiciary, related to the work of the Special Prosecution Office, but also every other solution in the implementation of the reforms).

Owing to the aforementioned arguments, we believe that the press release/statement of VMRO-DPMNE, after they failed to form the new government of RM, is at least inconsistent.

 

Assessed by: Teo Blazhevski

 

SOURCES:

 

 


This article was created within the framework of the Project to increase the accountability of the politicians and political parties Truthmeter implemented by Metamorphosis. The article is made possible by the generous support of the National Endowment for Democracy(NED) and The Balkan Trust for Democracy (BTD), a project of the German Marshall Fund of the United States, an initiative that supports democracy, good governance, and Euroatlantic integration in Southeastern Europe. The content is the responsibility of its author and does not necessarily reflect the views of Metamorphosis, National Endowment for Democracy, the Balkan Trust for Democracy, the German Marshall Fund of the United States, or its partners.

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