Electoral campaign and the offers of presidential nominees in FYR Macedonia

Electoral campaign and the offers of presidential nominees in FYR Macedonia

Skopje, March 18, 2014/Independent Balkan News Agency

By Naser Pajaziti

Political parties in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia have started their preparations for the electoral campaign in order to reveal the details of the political programs.

Parties in power, VMRO-DPMNE and BDI (Democratic Union for Integration) base their campaign in the achievements made so far during their government.

Meanwhile, Macedonian and Albanian opposition say that they are bringing a better government offer and development programs for the country.

Given that the campaign for the presidential elections starts on March 24, political parties say that they are now focused on presidential elections.

But, what are the main offers or main issues which will be offered by presidential nominees: George Ivanovski from VMRO-DPMNE, Stevo Pendarovski from LSDM (Macedonian Social Democratic League), Iljaz Halimi from PDSH (Albanian Democratic Party) and Zoran Popovski from GROM? Below, IBNA brings a picture of these presidential offers.

Ivanov says that the name should not be changed

George Ivanov, who runs for a second term in office says that his platform is based on three principles: honesty, sincerity and values. Ivanov insists that citizens, regardless of their religion or political convictions, remain his priority. Mr. Ivanov has said that he will defend the idea of not changing the name of the country in the negotiations taking place with Greece.

“During my mandate as president, I have manifested a clear and sincere attitude. I haven’t changed in politics, because offices come and go and Macedonia remains. I proudly demand the support of all the citizens of the country”, declares current president Ivanov.

Pendarovski discredits current president

Presidential nominee of the Macedonian opposition, Stevo Pendarovski says that his offer is based on increasing the role of the president. According to him, the current president has been under the control of the government. He said that he will invite all citizens to vote, regardless of their ethnicity, political convictions and religion.

“I want to be president of the country and of the citizens who have the same feelings of commitment to build the country as equal. This is the only way to put a stop on further divisions that are damaging the country”, says Pendarovski. In a message addressed to his rival, Ivanov, Pendarovski said that he will not allow the president to be a toy in the hands of the government.

Popovski demands for cross ethnic relations to be appeased

GROM party presidential nominee, Zoran Popovski told IBNA that his priority is to relieve the citizen from the daily politics and their effects, to appease cross ethnic relations and offer more freedom for media and the judicial system.

“Our main priority is to focus on the citizen. We must reflect positive energies through concrete development incentives which will benefit the citizens and no political interests”, says Popovski for IBNA.

Halimi, the Albanian between parties in favor and against

The only Albanian candidate from PDSH, Iljaz Halimi says that he demands the support of all citizens, as he’s the only Albanian candidate in these elections. According to him, Albanians must vote him, because he’s the only Albanian consensual candidate.

“I was nominated in order to jeopardize the bargaining made by government parties. I demand the support of all Albanians in order not to become an instrument of someone who calls for boycott. Let us join in Struga, in Kercova, let all Albanians unite and not fall a victim of the traps set by the others”, says Halimi, who was run by the Albanian opposition. He has not found the support of the other Albanian party, BDI, which publicly called on Albanians to boycott presidential elections as VMRO-DPMNE refused to come up with a joint name in the presidential race.

Analysts are expecting a strong battle

Experts are expecting a competitive political battle between presidential nominees. They are predicting that candidates will be more focused on the field than in massive rallies.

University professor and analyst Zdravko Savevski says that during this electoral campaign, we’re expected to see president Ivanov who runs for a second term in office, praise the achievements made so far, while the opposition is expected to make an offer for change.

“Through Ivanov, VMRO-DPMNE will trumpet the success achieved by him in the aspect of his domestic policies and also foreign policies, by insisting on not changing the name of the country. Meanwhile, the opposition will attack by stressing that the president was a mere instrument of the central government and prime minister Nikola Gruevski. On the other hand, the opposition will not only launch criticism against the majority, but also make new offers”, says Savevski. /ibna/