Wednesday, May 22, 2024

BETWEEN POLITICAL “INPATIENCE” AND FRAGILE “NORMALIZATION”

SDSM will most likely insist until the end that early parliamentary elections need to be organized, while other parties still do not have a clear and determined stance on the initiative of the Social Democrats. Politically, North Macedonia is in the middle of a political impatience to end the technical government and the crisis with the corona virus, which, despite the fact that it marks normalization, still poses a potential risk to citizens.

Author: Bardhyl Zaimi

The coronavirus pandemic had disrupted the electoral process in North Macedonia, when the election campaign was officially due to begin. As is already known, before the parliamentary elections, through the Przhino formula, the political government is replaced by a technical government, which includes the opposition in the executive branch. According to the law, the technical government is formed three months before the elections, while its mandate ends with the formation of the government that emerges from the parliamentary elections.

Due to the crisis with the corona virus, the President, Stevo Pendarovski, interrupted this process through the declaration of a state of emergency. In this situation, the current technical government led by the technical Prime Minister, Oliver Spasovski, has been extended due to the current situation, despite the fact that this technical government has a mandate only to organize the parliamentary elections.

In such a crisis and state of emergency, the functioning of the technical government has emerged as a necessity, as there has been no legal mechanism to respond appropriately to this dual situation. In reality, all state institutions and the public, meanwhile, have been focused on crisis management created by pandemic, which at the same time brought many anomalies of institutional functioning, but which fortunately did not erupt into any chaos.

Despite the shortcomings in management, the technical government in general has managed to tackle pandemic as a high-risk to the lives of all citizens. Government measures against the spread of the virus have generally been respected, while a decline in the infection curve is already being reported. Of course, this decline in the curve does not mean that the virus is not present, but it does give hope that things can be controlled and that the return to normalcy always seems to become more tangible.

Precisely in a situation where this curve showed a decrease in the number of infected, the first signs of political “passion” appeared in the political ground, which were related to the status of technical government and the legitimacy of the continuation of government. The first clashes erupted after warnings from SDSM, the holder of power, which demanded that Parliament Speaker, Talat Xhaferi should convene the parliament again to decide politically on the future of this government, which, according to the law, has a mandate only for organization of the elections.
After the media clashes, the speaker of parliament repeatedly explained that the mandates had been handed over and that the parliament could no longer legally convene. It seems that this was an attempt by the ruling SDSM party to end the technical government, which could not last indefinitely, at a time when its mission was defined by the Przhino formula. Within time, there were different interpretations of this situation, while earlier during the rule of former Prime Minister Gruevski, there was a return to the functioning of the parliament, understood in a completely different context.

Probably the return to the idea of ​​convening the parliament again seemed to be a very complicated and much unknown operation, so this idea seemed to be overshadowed despite the insistence that came in the form of political statements in the media. The failure of this idea to end the technical government has already opened the debate on holding early elections, as was announced during the declaration of the state of emergency by President Pendarovski, which meant, as soon as the conditions improved to normalize the situation with the pandemic to continue with the electoral process from where it remained, i.e. the official start of the election campaign.

Political impatience seems to be growing to end the technical government. At a time when the coronavirus condition is believed to be normalizing on the scene, political actors are emerging who see the possibility of a return to political government through early parliamentary elections, as announced.

 

These days, in a press release, SDSM leader, Zoran Zaev, had warned and at the same time justified the holding of elections. He has demanded that parliamentary elections be held in mid-June. According to him, the country needs immediate elections, if the health institutions give their consent. He also unveiled economic, health and political issues, which will be presented at the leaders’ meeting with the president.
SDSM will most likely insist until the end that early parliamentary elections need to be organized, while other parties still do not have a clear and determined stance on the initiative of the social democrats. Politically, North Macedonia is in the middle of a political impatience to end the technical government and the crisis with the corona virus, which, despite the fact that it marks normalization, still poses a potential risk to citizens.

Meanwhile, the technical government has announced relief measures and a gradual return to normalcy, as recommended by relevant international institutions. Most likely, everything will depend on tomorrow’s meeting of political party leaders with President Pendarovski. However, one thing remains certain that he will insist on holding elections to end the technical government. The end of the state of emergency will surely come with a date for the elections.

In addition, in this regard, many things will remain suspended, especially in terms of the unfolding of political platforms, because the whole campaign will focus precisely on the idea of managing the pandemic crisis. It remains certain that all other topics will remain on the margins, because in effective or not effective management of the crisis will also depend party credits and benefits.

It is also important to consider the implementation of this whole process, which, despite the tendencies for normalization, will take place under the threatening shadow of the corona virus. For vital citizens, this situation may be less likely to be overcomed by the presence of the virus, but political passion is determined by other premises, and despite the real concerns raised by conscientious objectors, party agendas will continue.

Holding early elections seems to be a complicated operation in this situation of the pandemic despite the fact that normalization is marked. However, it seems that the current technical government is no longer an option for the parties, which are in a hurry even in this situation to establish their own political presence in a government that will come in corona time!

 

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