President Gjorge Ivanov will not vote in the referendum on the name change. In Detroit, he told the United Macedonian Diaspora that 27 years ago, he voted for an independent country with dignity and that he will not go back on the promise he made the people.

“As for myself, I have already voted. I voted 27 years ago, on September 8, 1991. I was one of the people who voted for the Republic of Macedonia to become a sovereign and independent country, with its own name and dignity. I will not go back on that decision. Therefore, on September 30, I will not vote. Twice, I received a mandate from the people, not to allow changes to the constitution,  a change to the constitutional name, nor to accept ideas or proposals that will jeopardize the Macedonian national identity, the Macedonian nation, the Macedonian language and the model of Macedonian coexistence. I will not go back on my promise. Therefore, on September 30, I will not vote,”said Ivanov.

The president is currently on a visit to the United States. On September 27, he will address the general debate at the 73rd session of the United Nations General Assembly. He is also expected to meet with UN Secretary General António Guterres, and participate in several bilateral meetings with heads of state and government, and participants of the General Assembly.