SDSM, DUI and BESA sign initiative for formally announcing referendum

Skopje, 30 July, 2018 - 12:26 (META) 

MPs from the ruling majority announced that they will submit the initiative for formally announcing the referendum before Parliament Speaker, Talat Xhaferi today at noon.

According to information from SDSM’s parliamentary group, MPs have already collected signatures for the initiative to formally announce the referendum. MPs from DUI and BESA have also signed it.

After VMRO-DPMNE’s parliamentary group conduct their coordinative meeting, the initiative will be offered to them. After this meeting, the opposition party is expected to formally announce its position regarding the referendum and the ballot question.

The date (30 September) for holding the referendum and the ballot question will be in the draft decision submitted to the Parliament Speaker which, according to information released by SDSM, will be the same as suggested by Prime Minister Zaev and: Are you for EU and NATO membership by supporting the Agreement between the Republic of Macedonia and the Republic of Greece?

At 10 o’clock in Parliament, Parliament Speaker Xhaferi will meet with coordinators of the parliamentary groups with the exception of VMRO-DPMNE.

At this meeting, it is expected that information will be disclosed regarding the time of the session for announcing the referendum will be scheduled. At noon, a coordinative meeting between SDSM’s parliamentary group was announced. Some MPs pointed out that Prime Minister Zoran Zaev is expected to attend the meeting.

SOS: An unregistered NGO, GONGO or PONGO?

“Stop Operation Soros” (SOS), was introduced to the public on January the 17th, whose only declared members so far, are historian Nikola Srbov, who often appears in the media as a “political analyst” and journalists Cvetin Chilimanov and Nenad Mirchevski, who received various descriptions by the media. For example, a national television station, classified the three as an “Initiative Committee for establishing a Civil Association, “Stop Operation Soros”. In some media reports they were presented as a “Civil Movement” and sometimes as an “Initiative Committee for establishing a Civil Movement”, and they were even described a “non-governmental organization”.

According to a legal expert “Meta” consulted with, in principle all forms of movements, as in this case, need to be registered. An interesting example of this, is the Besa Movement, which began as a movement and then registered as a political party, but the statute still stands as the name “Besa Movement” and was registered in accordance with the Law on Political Parties. The expert we contacted indicated that any form of movement for achieving political ends, in principle, no matter under what name, needs to registered, whether it be as an association or organization. This can all be found in the regulations determined by the Law on Associations and Foundations.


“Meta” requested information from the Central Registry to see if such an entity is registered under the name “Stop Operation Soros.” The answer we received was on February the 8th, around 14:30 pm which said “there are no records for the entity under the title of a ‘Citizens Association’ named “Stop Operation Soros”.

“Regarding your request, based on the records in the Trade Registry and the Registry of other legal entities submitted through the single window system in the Central Register of RM and transferred to the Trade Registry and the Registry of other legal entities, at the time of the preparation of this information in the electronic database, there are no records for a ‘Civil Association’ or ‘Civil Movement’ called STOP OPERATION SOROS”, reads the information we received.

The Facebook page for “Stop Operation Soros” describe themselves as a “Non-Governmental Organization”, or NGO. On the website “STOP OP SOROS”, which is a Macedonian domain, it says that they’re a “movement” or “global initiative”.

Associations and organizations close to the government in the world are known as GONGO (Government organized NGO / NGO organized by the government) or PONGO (Party organized NGO / NGO organized political party). They are sponsored by government or a political party to fight for their political interests, while at the same time, embodying the image of a common NGO, to present themselves as part of civil society and the territory of the country, but also on an international level.

The terms GONGO and PONGO were first used back in 1989 when it was discovered the unique position NGOs found themselves in. They could abuse their position for narrow political goals to meet the interests of small, but powerful special interests.

Therefore, GONGO / PONGO, are established to achieve internal politics or foreign policy objectives, and sometimes this is done so they are able to extract international aid, real humanitarian causes or corruption or other criminal purposes, during which GONGO / PONGO are a mask to hide the activities related to the underworld.

As for the financing of SOS, historian Srbov told “Pogled” that they’re are funded “by activists, and they are joining us everyday in large numbers”, and that they are “led by an idea, and not by financial motives.”

One of the three founders, Cvetin Chilimanov, is a journalist, and Vice President of the Macedonian Association of Journalists (MAN). He is also the editor of the English service of the Macedonian Information Agency (MIA), which is a joint stock company owned by the state, meaning it gets paid by the state budget. According to financial reports for 2015, submitted on July the 14th, 2016, to the Macedonian Stock Exchange, the total revenue for that year for the agency was 49.61 million denars. From the state budget or from the government, who owns MIA, 40 million denars were transferred that year to the agency, and the remaining 9.61 million denars were distributed for the other needs of the agency.

Mr Chilimanov was previously employed by the Cabinet of the President of Macedonia, Gjorge Ivanov, and then he was employed by MIA, where he was sent to Washington as a correspondent.

The other part of the “movement”, Nenad Mirchevski and Nikola Srbov, are connected to the magazine and website “Republika”, which until last year, it was unknown who the owner was exactly, as the issuer company “Iresine Limited” was registered in Belize, a well known tax haven, until July last year, when its owner became the then director, Done Donevski. Mirchevski, for many years has worked as a journalist and editor at “Republika” and Srbov is a columnist.

The Constitutional Court on Wednesday will bring back amnesty for electoral fraud

Skopje, 10 March, 2016 - 20:04 (META) 

The Constitutional Court on Wednesday (March 16th) has to decide whether the President will have the right to pardon people for election fraud or whether they will leave the current Law on Amnesty as it is.

On the agenda for the next session of the Constitutional Court, published on the Court’s website between other topics, the agenda listed and the “Proposal for decision-making, the draft decision on the matter / 2016 ‘, i.e the initiative for assessing the constitutionality of the amendments to the Amnesty Law in 2009, which among other things prohibits amnesty for electoral fraud, pedophilia and crimes against humanity.

As we have discovered, the Constitutional Court yesterday asked the Parliament for their opinion on the initiative, and they got an express answer to their request, and the President of the Constitutional Court even faster, placed this item on the agenda for the next session.

The initiative for amnesty to people involved in electoral fraud comes a young lawyer from Ohrid, Risto Kiteski who works in at a law firm as a defense attorney of suspects in Operation “Titanic.”

The decision to accept the consideration of the initiative was handled by the judges. When they voted, five were “for” while the remaining four voted “against”.

When the Constitutional Court accepted the review of the initiative, it caused a public outcry, among experts, civil protests were organised in front of the court building, even diplomats in the country reacted.

Today Justice Minister Adnan Jashari said that the current Law on Amnesty is good and there is no need to change it.

“I have the same opinion as I did in 2009, when I voted for the law in Parliament as a MP, and I still believe that the law is good and I hope it will not be changed”, said Jashari

Todor Petrov requires assessment of the constitutionality of the Special Prosecution

Skopje, 7 November, 2015 - 11:54 (META) 

The Constitutional Court of the Republic of Macedonia confirmed that they have reached a new initiative to assess the constitutionality of the Special Prosecutor who submitted it to the President of the World Macedonian Congress, Todor Petrov, reported “Alsat M“.

Therefore, the Constitutional Court now has two requests which could take Katica Janeva down, and hew work with her.

Such an initiative has already been submitted by a lawyer, Tome Todorovski from Sveti Nikole, which although announced, he has yet to withdraw his request.