Manchevski: Central electronic population register and e-services portal nearly finished


Skopje, 26 October, 2018 - 13:29 (META) 

Today, Minister of Information Society and Administration Damjan Manchevski spoke at the first e-commerce conference held in Skopje and referred to the importance of providing e-services as the basis for the digitization of Macedonia.

“The final activities are underway to launch a new national e-services portal, as well as a central electronic population register. The portal will provide faster and simpler services and will be the only point of access of the state with citizens and businesses. What is particularly important to know, is that we have provided a legal opportunity for access to private electronic companies for the electronic population register. In Macedonia, there will no longer be different databases, but only one database for all citizens, which will be the basis of their electronic identity. I expect that the new portal and the register will significantly affect awareness, but also the trust of citizens for obtaining services, but also for electronic commerce, “said Manchevski.

He added that citizens must have confidence that their data will be safe and that is why the Government and MISA have an obligation to provide secure internet space.

“In this context, we have worked hard on the Strategy for Cyber ​​Security, and we are already in the final phase of finalizing the Action Plan for Cyber ​​Security. We are in the final stage of preparation of the National Broadband Plan. We completed the mapping of state-owned electronic communications networks, whereby we precisely defined the so-called “White” zones, ie zones where there is no infrastructure,” added Manchevski.

The conference is organized by the Association for e-Commerce of Macedonia.

 


Meet and Code as part of the European week of programing


Skopje, 17 October, 2018 - 13:19 (META) 

The participants in Macedonia will have the opportunity to gain knowledge in the domain of technology as part of the European week of programming that is taking place fro 6 -21 of October, through events supported by the Foundation of Internet and society “Metamorphosis”, as part of the “Meet and Code 2018” project. The Foundation, as organizers of the event, stress that the project’s goal is for the students to get acquainted with the world of technology and the possibilities this area is offering.

As part of this project, at the secondary school in Skopje “Josip Broz Tito” the manifestation “Intuitive coding with App inventor” was organized, where apart from representatives of “Metamorphosis” also the minister of information society and administration, Damjan Manchevski also attended the event.

Valon Abdiu od “Metamorphosis” stressed that the project’s goal is for students to acquire knowledge about the world of technology and the possibilities it offers for the creation of innovative things. He explained that through the „Meet and Code 2018“ more than 130 events were presented and 24 events were supported with grants in the amount of 300 eur per event.

-All of this was done with the aim for the young people to get ready for the world of technology because this is an important part of our lives – it influences how we work, learn, communicate, shop, etc. Therefore, through these events, we want the new generations to become aware of different aspects of technology, to increase their programming skills and abilities to be ready for the future – said Abdiu.

The minister of information society, Damjan Manchevski, stated that this project will instigate an interest among the youngsters for new technology and the gains that the IT sector can have in their lives in the future.

-Apart from regular classes, we are trying to motivate students to program and to find ways of creating something in an inovative way. As a minister that is managing this sector, I think that the IT area in Macedonia, apart from bringing higher salaries and more secure jobs, it offers young people an opportunity for self -employment – said Manchevski for „Portalb.mk”

The „Meet and Code 2018“ project’s goal is to show the world what can be created through programming and how fun can the programming be. This initiative is supporting the young, local and non-profit organizations in all countries. Apparently, it strengthens the local initiatives that allow digital programming and education for all 0 which is a declared goal by EU’s week of programming.

The events at „Meet and Code 2018“ are different, from courses for beginners to artificial intelligence. The young can take part in courses where the basic functions of computers are explained or how to use functions like Word. But they can take part in workshops for programming, robotics or design.

All events from 2018 can be found at the following address: https://www.meet-and-code.org

„Meet and Code 2018″ project in Macedonia is implemented by Metamorphosis Foundation in partnership with the IT portal „Stifter-Helfen“ and the partners from the „TechSoup Europe“ network. „Meet and Code 2018“ is helped by the SAP company.


Manchevski: For cyber – security, the cooperation between the public and private sector is important


Skopje, 9 October, 2018 - 15:32 (META) 

The Minister of Information Society and Administration, Damjan Manchevski addressed today at the opening of the regional conference on the subject of “Cyber Security: Cooperation and exchange of information” organized by AEK and OSCE’s office in Macedonia.

“Cybersecurity is not only an IT subject. From this point, in order to guarantee the security, the cooperation is crucial. In the next period, we shall invest in the strengthening the cooperation between the private and the public sector by raising it on a new, partnership level The cooperation with the private sector will allow a safe environment for interchanging information, research, and development. Securing a safe infrastructure for exchanging the information will stimulate the entrepreneurship, and that will provide support for the domestic companies’ competitiveness and will protect their investments” said Minister Manchevski.

A team consisting of experts from MIOA, Ministry of Defense and the Ministry of Interior, have made the National strategy for cyber-security 2018 -2021.


Manchevski: The opposition has been filibustering the media laws for four months


Skopje, 12 June, 2018 - 18:01 (META) 

The Minister of Information Society and Administration, Damjan Manchevski, today at a press conference in the Government asked the Parliamentary Committee on Transport, Communications and Environment, chaired by VMRO-DPMNE, to work continuously on a daily basis, until the amendment debate on the Draft Law on Audio and Audiovisual Media Services has ended.

He said that the opposition should think about the citizens’ interest, instead of struggling to keep its staff in the Council of the Agency for Audio and Audiovisual Media Services (AAAMS) and in the Program Council of Macedonian Radio and Television (MRT) with a large number of amendments.

“We are not against the debate regarding the amendments, but it should end in a reasonable time. MPs from VMRO-DPMNE are against the public debate, i.e. public presentation of the candidates for members of the MRT Program Council and the Council of the Agency for Audio and Audiovisual Media Services,”said Manchevski.

According to Manchevski, for four months the opposition has been making endless debates whose clear goal is to delay the passing of the law. In doing so, says the minister, VMRO-DPMNE submits contradictory amendments.

“The Committee has had only 6 sessions in which we’ve managed to pass 7 amendments only, with 67 remaining. With this pace, the law will be passed in 2 and a half years. The amendments propose that the mandatory domestic production program of MRT to be reduced from the current 50 to 40 percent, and with the amendments VMRO-DPMNE also demands reduction and increase, and proposes to be from 30 to 70 percent in seven different amendments,” said the Minister of Information Society and Administration.

He says the government will not give up on the intentions to deflect the influence of politicians from the media sphere and let the media outlets work in peace.

“We will not allow Macedonia to be regarded as a suppressed country where the media operates under pressure, blackmail and fear. The regulatory bodies, and especially the national broadcaster and the media outlets, should be left to the media workers,” says Manchevski.

“Mancevski made a textbook example of pressure on the legislature today with the intention of adopting a poor quality law that would allow for rough partization of media regulatory bodies”, VMRO-DPMNE accused, reacting at today’s press conference of the Minister of Information Society and Administration.

“SDSM is interested in adopting a law in a summary proceeding that will enable ruling with the help of media created darkness and deprivation of citizens from information about non-working, administration’s partization, abuse of power, harmful policies in all spheres, the impoverishment of citizens, the devastation of the state at home and internationally”, VMRO-DPMNE says.

 

 

The text is made within the framework of the project “Media Reform Observatory”, implemented by the Foundation for Internet and Society Metamorphosis, “Agora” Center for Promoting Civil Values ​​and the Platform for Investigative Journalism and Analyzes – PINA, with the financial support of the “Foundation Open” Society – Macefoom-logo-disklejmerdonia “.           The content of the text is the sole responsibility of the authors and can in no way be considered to reflect the views of the “Open Society Foundation – Macedonia”.


Experts and journalists target AAVMU bill once again


Skopje, 19 April, 2018 - 21:25 (META) 

At today’s public debate on the bill on audio and audiovisual media services, organized by the parliamentary Committee on Transport, Communications and Environment, experts, associations of journalists and media workers criticized certain parts in the text, which they say will worsen the conditions.

According to the president of the Association of Journalists of Macedonia, Naser Selmani, the smaller amount of money provided for the MRT as a public broadcasting service will prevent it from performing its function in full.

“Public services should inform, educate and entertain. Private TV stations don’t have to do it. It would be good to do it, but they are not obliged. Only MTV has to, but can’t do it if there is smaller amount of money. Do you notice that the news of MRTV start and end with information from Skopje? You will not hear news from other cities until the correspondent network develops. MRTV does not have a correspondent network; at least 100 more people need to be employed – journalists and cameramen,” said Selmani.

He says that opening new channels, for which the government would have to provide money not anticipated in the budget for MRT, will violate the independence of the public broadcasting service.

“New channels will be opened with the new amendments, and on the other hand we are reducing the funds. That provision stating that “if there is a need [for funds], we would spend them on technical equipment”, is a serious invasion of the autonomy of the public service,” said the president of the Association of Journalists of Macedonia.

Lazo Petrushevski, the president of the Council of the Agency for Audio and Audiovisual Media Services (AAAMS), believes that professional employment of Council members will lead to a change in the character of this regulatory body.

“It will be something between an agency and a broadcasting council, it won’t work and it will cause problems,” said Petrushevski.

MRT’s Program Council contested article 46 of the Law, which also refers to financing.

“It says that 0.7 percent of the Budget will be allocated for 2018, and 1 percent up to 2021. This article comprises a paragraph saying that the percentages of paragraph 1 of this article will be realized if this does not disturb the fair allotment of budget funds. We think that this paragraph allows political influence. The percentages are made known but then sugarcoated. We suggest removing of this paragraph,” said Smilka Janevska – Sarkanjac, president of the Program Council.

The Minister of Information Society and Administration, Damjan Mancevski, stressed that the Law, which, as he puts it has the goal to take politicians’ hands off the media, will be the starting point for the reforms in the area. He asked for this law to be given a chance, which, as he said, has 38 published and debated versions so far and still has 200 open issues.

 

The text is made within the framework of the project “Media Reform Observatory”, implemented by the Foundation for Internet and Society Metamorphosis, “Agora” Center for Promoting Civil Values ​​and the Platform for Investigative Journalism and Analyzes – PINA, with the financial support of the “Foundation Open” Society – Macefoom-logo-disklejmerdonia “.           The content of the text is the sole responsibility of the authors and can in no way be considered to reflect the views of the “Open Society Foundation – Macedonia”.


Manchevski: From the employees under the Framework Agreement, 958 will begin work


Skopje, 29 March, 2018 - 13:38 (META) 

A plan for the allocation of jobs in the public sector institutions to 958 people, from a total of 1,600, who are employed in accordance with the Framework Agreement has been created, said Minister of Information Society and Administration Damjan Mancevski and Deputy Prime Minister for implementation of the Framework Agreement, Hazbi Lika.

Employees are given a chance to refuse a position, however a second refusal will mean “cancellation” or termination of contract.

“It is important to note that if these people refuse to be allocated to the posts provided for them under the mentioned criteria, they will be transferred to the MISA transfer list. If they refuse again, their contracts will be terminated”, said Manchevski.

The employment of this group began in 2008, and until 2014-15, they were employed through advertisements in the Secretariat for Implementation of the Framework Agreement.


Mancevski: Digitalization overcomes gender differences and recognizes skills only


Skopje, 8 March, 2018 - 20:48 (META) 

Digitalization creates equal opportunities for all, regardless of gender, because the Internet recognizes only skills, knowledge and capabilities, said Minister of Information Society and Administration, Damjan Mancevski at the first conference of its kind “The Digital Age and Women”, which took place today at the “Marriott” hotel.

The main topic of the conference was the role and significance of digital technology in the development of society, as well as its contribution to the equal participation of women and men in all social processes, including business.

“Another benefit of digitization, is that it creates a huge opportunity for economic development. It brings development, unites people and makes services faster, cheaper, and more efficient. It also contributes to the overcoming of gender gaps”, said Manchevski.

The minister told women to continue the fight for equality and stressed that in his office, there are six women who are professional and are the best at what they do.

He went on to say that very few women are in the administration, but the government plans to increase the number of women in politics by 50%, by 2020, with legislative changes.

Mancevski supported EU Commissioner Maria Gabriel’s call, that she would not accept participation in any conference, if there was not a minimum of one female participant.


Mancevski: Employees under the Framework Agreement may be redeployed in schools


Skopje, 8 March, 2018 - 20:08 (META) 

Employees receiving salaries under the Ohrid Framework Agreement, and do not attend the workplace, will be deployed in jobs other than public administration, but will also receive offers of work throughout the public sector, for example, in schools, kindergartens, health facilities and public enterprises, stated Minister of Information Society and Administration, Damjan Mancevski.

He went on to explain that the 1,600 employees under the Framework Agreement will be offered positions, and if they do not accept, they will be placed on a transfer list from which they can be re-deployed, according to the needs of other institutions, but only if it is acceptable to them.

This move allows for changes in four laws and a practical intervention in the Public Administration Act.


Cheaper roaming doesn’t mean free roaming, says Manchevski


Skopje, 23 February, 2018 - 17:27 (META) 

The Minister of Information Society and Administration, Damjan Manchevski, at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona will have meetings related to the Digital summit in Skopje this April.

At the Digital summit, one of the announced subjects will be the discussion for a cheaper roaming between the countries of Western Balkans and the countries that are EU members.

“In Brussels, all European operators are working on this issue. I don’t know whether the current telecommunication map will be presented in Skopje or that will happen one month later in Sofia. The plan with concrete deadlines and tasks, who should do what in order for the roaming expenses to be decreased for all of the citizens of the Western Balkans towards the EU, will come out from this map. But that doesn’t mean this will be a free roaming. The Agreement for association and stabilization that we shall sign with all six EU countries forbids that. There shall be some expense but it shall be symbolic” said Manchevski.

He said that this will ease the work i.e. the state will not be dealing with the operators but that will be done through Brussels.


Manchevski: The reforms will contribute to depoliticizing of the administration and the data will be open


Skopje, 21 February, 2018 - 14:56 (META) 

The strategy of the reform of the public administration 2018-2022 that was voted at the government’s session plans four key area s- creation and exchange of policies, public service and management of human resources, responsibility, transparency and providing services and the IT support for the administration – informed today the Minister of Information Society and Administration, Damjan Manchevski.

He stressed that the strategy has a plan for depoliticizing the administration that, as he said, is one of the basic problems that were detected in the previous period. The depoliticizing will be conducted through the promotion of the selection procedures, employment and promotion based on the principle of estimation, equal and fair treatment, including an equal participation of all ethnic communities. Special attention will be given to the professionalization of higher ranking management structures and a special category for high ranking civil servants will be introduced.

The STrategy plans a defining the system of salaries and preparing a new law for salaries in the public sector. The goal is to determine a just system of payment of salaries that will be based on the “equal salary for an equal job” principle.

-A significant part of the Strategy presents the system for open data. It presents a strategic approach to openness and availability of information for which a serious personnel and technical preparedness of all institutions is necessary. The current level of the institutions is on a different level and that is the greatest challenge. A large part of this project is devoted to the training and the raising of the consciousness within in the institutions about the importance of this system. A large number of analysis, numbers, concrete data that were taken from various documents will be available. All institutions will be obliged to process all the documents as metadata in order to be easily interlinked and to allow comparisons, analysis and to survey the conditions – said Manchevski.