by | 10 February, 2023

What good is including Bulgarians in the Constitution if you can’t save 130 sick people?

1 This guy will be a minister for this, that guy will be a minister for that, this ministerial post will go to this party, the deputy post to that party, and then the directorial positions will be shared by these and those… News from the “I don’t give a damn” section.

Honestly, isn’t it clear to the government that we no longer give a damn about who the new minister will be? As if it matters which party will take, for instance, the Ministry of Justice, when there is no justice anyway. Who cares who’ll take over the Ministry of Health, when there’s no public health.

We don’t give a damn about their deal-making.

And why is that? Because we don’t need a prime minister who’ll express his anger and disappointment that the system is flawed when someone dies because the state didn’t provide him with medicine, a prime minister who’ll say it mustn’t happen again. We need a prime minister who’ll say: I did this and that, I did it this way and that way, and that won’t happen again.

We don’t need a minister of health who’ll say “we’ve detected the articles of three laws which need to be amended” after years and years of protests, meetings and pleas of 130 people suffering from cystic fibrosis. What has the minister done besides detecting the articles of the laws? Was there a sit-down with experts, did they write anything, did they propose changes, did they put the changes in a governmental and parliamentary procedure? Even the Ministry itself detected that out of the 130 patients with cystic fibrosis, eight are critical. The very word says it all – they’re critical, they don’t have time to wait.

We don’t need MPs who wouldn’t come to vote and pass the laws even if they were introduced in the Assembly. They’d try to outwit each other, to count the votes, if you have the majority pass it yourselves, we won’t enter the hall out of spite… In every article of the law that needs to be passed, they’d try to add one more sentence to give MPs new privileges; only then would MPs come to work. You do notice that we don’t have an Assembly, don’t you? We pay them to do nothing. Do you remember what was the last time all MPs came to work? They don’t show up even for question time sessions – that’s how lazy they are.

Meanwhile, SDSM are making deals at full speed. The whole month – Taravari this, Taravari that, the Central Board, an Executive Office, this guy met that guy, this guy is in, that guy is out, and if someone didn’t get the positions he’s asked for, then Macedonia’s European perspectives would be endangered. Drama of European, or rather, Euro-Atlantic proportions.

Apparently, the new majority would stand for “reforms, economic policies and the EU integration”. They’ve spent more time coming up with the name of their deal-making than sitting down to get something done.

After all, if their deal-making stands for the EU, will there be medicines? What good is including Bulgarians in the Constitution if you can’t save 130 sick people?

2 When we went to the polls, we thought we were electing someone who’d govern us, not someone who’d be making deals.

Good morning to Dimitar Kovachevski, who after one year as Prime Minister says “that’s how our country works, or rather, that’s how our country doesn’t work”, criticizing “the bureaucracy which broods over why something can’t be done, which almost never thinks why something needs to be done, which doesn’t mind waiting for people to suffer”.

His acknowledgment that “bureaucracy is not people from another planet, bureaucracy is all of us and it’s time that we faced that fact” doesn’t mean anything.

Who’s supposed to face that fact? The 130 patients with cystic fibrosis who’ve been begging the state for years to provide them with the medicine they need to survive? Cancer patients, who can’t get the medicine they need after chemotherapy, face this fact every day at the Oncology Clinic. All of us, every day, in one way or another, on one occasion or another, are facing irresponsible bureaucracy.

However, bureaucracy is not all of us. You are bureaucracy.

It’s been almost eight years since the first protest demanding justice. We didn’t take it to the streets “every day at 6” so after eight years in power the prime minister would tell us that “things are not going well”. We went to protests every day to prevent a way of governing that would endanger our lives.

The revolutionaries of that time who were given responsible leadership positions in the government should remember that they themselves were asking “who’ll take the responsibility” and promised that “such a thing mustn’t happen ever again”. Many of the ones who then fought for justice are now in a position to change something. They’ve been sitting in the institutions that were supposed to make the changes: the Parliament, the Government, the ministries, municipal councils, public enterprises, agencies, state companies, regulatory bodies… They are the people who always make excuses why something can’t be done, instead of doing it.

Then, what’s changed about everyday life, except that the prime minister got angry?

3 Oh, yes, there is one more very significant change – the words “Bulgarian” and “fascist” mustn’t be used together in the same sentence, since they’re not in line with our European integrations, the reforms and economic policies.

That’s why, Minister of Internal Affairs Oliver Spasovski, commemorating the 79th anniversary of the death of the national hero Hristijan Todorovski – Karposh, wrote on Facebook that “on a cold February day in 1944, Karposh died from the enemy’s fascist bullet”.

That sounds poetic enough to be in the spirit of good neighbourly relations. Who was the fascist enemy of the Macedonian partisans in 1944? Where did the bullet that killed Karposh come from? To be precise, on a cold February day in 1944, Hitler was having a stag party in a castle in Bavaria and he was so excited Eva Braun would be his wife that he got drunk, took a machine gun and started shooting in the air uncontrollably. One bullet from Hitler’s machine-gun hail hit Karposh and, as fate would have it – now that insignificant incident can become an obstacle to our EU integration. Truth be told, it might be an obstacle for the reforms and for the economic policies of the new parliamentary majority as well.

4 The struggles on our way to the EU shouldn’t be a reason for us to forget America. The Government, determined the Plan of activities within the Strategic Dialogue with the USA. Focusing on the list of our strategic wishes, Minister Bujar Osmani emphasized that “we will advocate for the establishment of a direct flight Skopje – New York”. Still, what I found more exciting than the fact we’d fly off to America was his statement that we’d meet the criteria, which should enable us to travel without American visas.

Quite a realistic wish list of a Government in a country where the US administration sends special teams from Washington to investigate corruption, a country where every day the US ambassador threatens blacklists of corrupt officials.


Translated by Nikola Gjelincheski