When a position is not an actual position

When a position is not an actual position
Aleksandra M. Mitevska

One and a half month after the announcement of the referendum - a period in which thousands of appeals were sent to the leadership of VMRO-DPMNE to announce its position on the referendum, the opposition finally announced that its position was that there was no position.

It was quite anticipated and subtly announced in the past that the leadership of VMRO-DPMNE in this way would try to collect some political points, by relativizing its responsibility for the capital, but also very delicate processes taking place in the country, and neutralizing the risks from division within the party - in which the disagreement that was unthinkable in some very old times already reigns more and more. However, the alleged position announced by Hristijan Mickoski sounds frivolous for a party leader who just a few days ago loudly urged his party members to follow his lead, and to push him when he hesitates. After a day-long session of party bodies on Tuesday night, it turned out that Mickoski actually does not know where he is leading his followers. His statement, contradictory combined with calls for a TV duel to the prime minister and refusing to answer journalistic questions, in fact, showed that Mickoski hesitates, but that it is hardly possible that his environment will be able to push him... Since all sound political names from the world stage that have entered the list of visitors to the country in the past weeks failed to do so.

The nihilistic attitude towards the agreement with Greece, without offering an alternative to unblocking the Euro-Atlantic integration, is certainly not a position that Angela Merkel or the Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz woulfd like to hear from the leader of their sister party in the small Balkan state that is currently in the center of attention of the international community. The neutral attitude towards the September 30th election is certainly not a relevant position, especially for a series of leaders of member states in the EPP, as a political orbit of the right-wing parties in Europe, which mainly supported the agreement with Greece - not as an ideal option for Macedonian patriots, but as the only model for achieving the strategic priorities of our country.

The "Neither fish nor fowl" position delivered by VMRO-DPMNE in response to the great expectations of the biggest opposition party to finally finish all the internal consultations that it used for weeks as an argument for the lack of a position on the referendum, surely it is not encouraging for the irresponsible party supporters, who are probably aware of the benefits that NATO and EU membership brings, but it is difficult for them to swallow the painful compromise the government has made, led by their political opponents. And, in VMRO-DPMNE, of course, there are such members and sympathizers. If it was not so, it would probably the intra-party's disagreements concerning the referendum would not have occurred, and the polls would not have noted such a great mood for voting on September 30th.

This opportunist attitude towards the different streams in the party, in fact, means wind in the sails of those former and current VMRO-DPMNE officials who, unlike the indecisive Mickoski, declared that they would support the boycott of the referendum from the very start. In a situation when the new party leader does not announce his personal stance on the September 30 vote, it is normal for the wider party membership to bow to those party figures that still have influence in the base, whose position is determined, unlike the position the party leader.

The only question is whether the new leadership of VMRO-DPMNE would have this same sceptical position in relation to the referendum, if, for example, before the announcement of the referendum, its request for pardon was accepted - not only for the events of September 27 last year, but for all cases of the SPO that emerged from the so-called "bombs". Such calculations and attempts of VMRO-DPMNE for bargaining on issues of crucial importance for the country's Euro-Atlantic perspectives are now creating a hazy insincerity regarding the positions of the opposition before the referendum.

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