Skopje, March 13, 2014/Independent Balkan News Agency
By Naser Pajaziti
A wide debate has sparked in Skopje in relation to the holding of a normal electoral process without incidents and without irregularities. Political parties say that it’s necessary to have a normal process on voting day on April 13 for the presidential elections and on April 27 for the early parliamentary elections, but also in the second potential round of the presidential elections, in case there’s no winning candidate in the first round.
The government says that it will increase security measures in order to guarantee a quiet electoral process, while the opposition is skeptic about the implementation of electoral fraud scenarios and electoral irregularities, by pointing its finger toward the current government.
Over 7 thousand police officers engaged in this electoral process
Over 7 thousand police officers will receive extra training in order to face all challenges that may be presented in the electoral process.
Minister of Interior, Gordana Jankulovska says that a manual has been especially prepared containing key parts of the new legal framework and recommendations for police and how they must act in situation when urgent decision making on scene is needed.
“This is a process of a special importance, because we’re holding both presidential and parliamentary elections. It’s the first time that police is organized in such way. Although a considerable part of police officers have been trained for action, it’s still necessary for them to be up to date with the new electoral regulation”, says minister Gordana Jankulovska.
She warned that Ministry of Interior will prosecute all those police officers who will be at the service of political structures on the election day and during the campaign.
Opposition is skeptic toward the Ministry of Interior
Macedonian opposition is skeptic toward the Ministry of Interior. General Secretary of the opposition party LSDM (Macedonian Social Democratic League), Oliver Spasovski, declared for IBNA that there are complaints about the decision of the Interior Ministry to fast track the issuing of citizens with identity cards after the finalization of the process of verification of voters lists.
“Ministry of Interior is manipulating the public opinion and minister Jankulovska must clarify as to why her ministry has decided to fast track the issuing of citizens with identity cards until the election day. We suspect that this is being done to implicate suspicious voters”, declared Spasovski. According to him, the issuing of identity cards must continue until March 30, which is the deadline for the verification of voters’ lists. The request comes as a result of suspicions for abuses with the issuing of identity cards, in order to have people vote in favor of the party in power, like it has been the case in Albania, where on the verge of the elections, many people were issued with identity cards in different areas, enabling them to vote several times.
Council of Europe is not happy with the pre electoral situation
A delegation of the European Council has closely inspected the situation and has issued negative evaluations about the pre electoral atmosphere in FYR Macedonia.
European Council Parliamentary Assembly delegation led by the Austrian MP, Stefan Schennach has published today (13.03) a report in relation to the evaluation of the process ahead of the electoral campaign.
He has also issued positive evaluations about the improvement of the Electoral Code and the need to implement this code.
European Council report underlines that the holding of presidential and early parliamentary elections can cause problems.
The report also criticizes Democratic Union for Integration (BDI) for its decision to boycott presidential elections.
According to the report, the stand of the biggest Albanian party BDI, which is part of the current government coalition, which warns for unsuccessful presidential elections, is against the rules of democracy.
“The country will hold early parliamentary elections on the day when the second round of presidential elections will take place, on April 27, 2014. This may cause a number of organizational problems, but it is hoped that this will not have an impact on the parallel elections”, underlines the report.
Council of Europe reaction follows the warning issued by BDI of not recognizing the president who is elected in a non consensual way, after the fact that its efforts to elect a president accepted by all political parties in the country failed. The failure of this effort led to the decision for early elections.
The delegation expresses its regret for the polarization of media, which according to it, it may serve as a means of propaganda more than a means of information for the public opinion. /ibna/