by | 21 April, 2023

Will the country’s stability be compromised if we find out how big the commission will be? Or who’ll take it?

1 Who’s asking about “Bechtel and Enka”? When we’re asking how one billion and three hundred million euros will be spent for the construction of the four motorway sections in our country, the topic of discussion isn’t the construction company, but our Government, which will pay for the construction. The topic of discussion isn’t the USA either. “Bechtel and Enka” is a private company. It could be “Coca-Cola”, “Tesla” or “Amazon”. We don’t care about how a private company runs its business. Our question is very reasonable. How will our money be spent? It’s not a small amount of money. That’s the only thing we care about in this case. Especially now that the Government says that the contract with the private construction company is a secret, and complains that we insist to find out how secrecy will protect the public interest. Is that really not clear?

Every time we ask how the taxpayers’ money is spent they set their “lackeys” on us with messages: “You’re causing a rift between us and the USA!”. What? Will the American company get mad at us and not accept the 1.3 billion euros!?

No, certainly not. We’re not causing a rift between you and the USA. You’re causing a rift between us. Nobody’s against your strategic partnership with the USA. However, we didn’t elect you to protect American interests. We elected you to protect the interests of the Macedonian citizens and the Macedonian state. Again, is that really not clear?

The way our government is handling the entire procedure only adds additional distrust toward the institutions of the state, and not many people trust them anyway. All right, they’ve just come up with the idea that the contract containing secret clauses will be shown only to the MPs who have security certificates.  Will the country’s stability be compromised if we find out how big the commission will be? Or who’ll take it?

It’s more than likely that the Assembly will pass the laws requested by “Bechtel and Enka”. I believe the roads will be built. All citizens will benefit from them. However, it will remain a secret which citizens will have a bigger benefit than others. The Government hasn’t really earned our trust. The Washington they’re threatening with whenever someone suspects the Government is spending taxpayers’ money in a non-transparent way, is the same Washington which is making lists of corrupt politicians and keeps reminding them how bad they are in dealing with corruption and impunity of high-profile crime.

We don’t know if everything is done by the book, since they say it’s a secret. However, the public’s perception is that they’re up to something. And in doing so, they’re shamelessly hiding behind America.

2 It all started around 2000, at the beginning of the 21st century, when politicians started having photos taken in churches and mosques during religious services, but didn’t make statements. As we were entering the new millennium, it became increasingly more important to see what politicians have to state about the birth of Christ, the resurrection, Eid, iftar dinners, fasting and other religious events. As if the believers don’t know, so they have to wait for the ministers and the mayors to tell them how significant that specific day is and that there should be peace on earth. And if, God forbid, the general secretary of a party forgets to congratulate Easter or Eid, it’s as if the religious holiday never happened, so there won’t be peace on earth.

And, in our secular state, we lived to see the day when the Holy Fire from Jerusalem was brought on Easter by the Minister of Internal Affairs Oliver Spasovski and the Minister of Culture Bisera Kostadinovska – Stojchevska, both from the left-wing SDSM. And the Prime Minister of the left-wing Government, Dimitar Kovachevski, wanted to personally be there and went to the airport to welcome the fire, which landed from Tel Aviv on the government plane. And he presented it as a historic event.

What will be the next change of the Constitution? To erase the article in which the state is separated from religion? If politicians tell believers how to celebrate religious holidays, then maybe priests and hodjas should tell us how to live.

3 According to the latest UNICEF report, Macedonia ranks second in the world in terms of the number of unvaccinated children without at least one vaccine. Now, that’s a miracle. Where we were and how far we’ve come. A greater miracle than the miracle of the Holy Fire on Holy Saturday.

4 The case of the anaesthesiologist from Tetovo, who filmed his female patients with a mobile phone and made vulgar comments on social media, is yet another example of how politicians endanger our lives. The commission of the Faculty of Medicine in Skopje, which refused to validate the specialty certificate he earned in Prishtina, complained they were under political pressure to sign it. I wonder, the person who called on behalf of the party, would they use their connections in the hospital to make sure this specific doctor dose their anaesthesia? Or to post a photo of his daughter on TikTok?

Half a year ago, they tried to elect air traffic controllers the same way, with the party making phone calls. I understand their approach to connections, influence, friendships, relatives, bribes… But, they don’t have to go all the way and kill us just because they’re important in the party. Let them work in an office and get birth certificates wrong, at least they’re not lethal that way. If the party owes them so much, let them come up with a new director-level position, give them a driver, a secretary, let them take it easy, since we can’t get away from paying them.

Macedonia is small. We know each other. We know who studied what, how good they are and what they’re good at. Here, for example, did the colleagues of the anaesthesiologist from Tetovo really not know anything about him? In the Tetovo hospital they couldn’t even punish him because there was no disciplinary commission in the institution.

It’s a problem that our people are moving abroad!? That our experts are leaving the country!? Of course they are leaving, it’s precisely because of such cases. What do you offer them to come back? Taiwanese investments in the industrial zones? Do you expect them to buy an apartment above the gas pipeline in Lisiche or in the so-called “wafers” buildings in Treska? Or perhaps in the skyscrapers at Holiday Inn on the lot owned by the Macedonian Orthodox Church, the largest construction company in the country and a serious competitor of “Bechtel and Enka”. Do you expect them to pay taxes and contributions regularly, but not ask what they get for that money?

Our youth goes to study in Slovenia, and this summer they’ll work in Croatia. Our doctors and nurses are waiting in a queue to go to Germany. Our computer engineers are already in the Netherlands.

They’d go to the end of the world to run away from this particracy.

5 Around this time of the year, 6 years ago, in 2017, a week before the organized attack on the Parliament, I wrote about the case of a gynaecologist who lied to women that they were pregnant, and his colleagues kept silent. The doctor changed several private hospitals and eventually ended up at the state clinic. Everyone knew he was lying, but the ones who were blamed were the women who believed him.

In 2017, on the occasion of this case, I wrote: “This is already a psychopathological condition of the spirit of our society. We live in a country where the one to blame is the patient who trusts the doctor and not the doctor who lies to his patient consciously”.

Those were the days when the one to blame wasn’t President Gjorgje Ivanov, who consciously violated the Constitution, but all of us who told him he was violating it. The ones to blame weren’t the politicians from Gruevski’s VMRO-DPMNE – DUI coalition government, which was consciously stealing from us for 11 years, but all of us who demanded that they go to jail and return the money they stole from us.

Six years later, it turned out that even the ones who ordered the illegal wiretapping are not ones to blame but us who listened to the recordings. And the ones to blame are not the ones who promised to bring justice and peace, and that that evil would never be repeated, but all of us who warned them that that evil has already started being repeated.

In 2017 I wrote that “violence, stupidity and impunity are becoming the measure of our lives”.

What has changed since then?


Translated by Nikola Gjelincheski