Republic of Macedonia : Who is the real winner of the elections?

Congratulations to all the citizens who voted for change. Yes, you had the courage to stand up and choose for what is dear to all of us: true democracy, not spoiled by corruption, by irregular appointments, by a climate of fear.

Let’s face it: as a result of these elections, your country deserves a fresh start with a new government and new faces. Those who believe they can continue with business as usual are wrong. Those who think they can continue on the authoritarian track, are wrong. You, the silent majority, showed that you care about the future of your country, by your vote, you showed that you want to live in freedom in a prosperous country with a future — for yourself and your children.

The ball is now in the camp of the Albanian community: they will decide on what will happen next. To the Albanians, I would like to say the following: “don’t waste time anymore. Don’t participate again in a government where you are completely sidelined. Yes, you had some Ministers and even a deputy Prime Minister. But for all important decisions, you were overruled by your coalition partner. Where are the economic investments in your part of the country? What about the infrastructure, about the schools, the hospitals, the roads? It is time for change, time to stand up for your rights as a community, time to start working again on integration in the EU and NATO. This is about your future. For once, your voice is decisive for every citizen living in this country.”

And yes, you have my commitment: if you make the right choice, I am willing to support negotiations with Greece to end the name dispute. Because with reasonable people, a solution is possible.

Peter Vanhoutte