Mickoski wants Katica dismissed, Zaev does not allow it

Mickoski wants Katica dismissed, Zaev does not allow it
Special Public Prosecutor Katica Janeva and her team of prosecutors became the main obstacle between Prime Minister, and SDSM leader, Zoran Zaev and the leader of the main opposition party VMRO-DPMNE, Hristijan Mickoski. The two met Sunday evening in the government building and agreed to find a solution on how the status of the Special Public Prosecutor's Office will be resolved, given that the opposition VMRO-DPMNE should support the adoption of the draft law for the public prosecutor's office. Mickoski demands the dismissal of Janeva, and Zaev, at least for the time being, says that Janeva and her team have his support.

"It is significant to us that this special public prosecutor and her team have lost all credibility to win our support in the future. Principal integration of the SPO into the PPO can be discussed, but the rights and obligations of the future PPO and all parts that arise from the new Public Prosecution Law should be the subject of negotiations of the political parties," Mickoski said after his meeting with Zaev. According to the latest information coming from SDSM, the government will not accept the change of Janeva, and Zaev also gave his full support yesterday, and said that the current team should remain and be given a chance to continue its work.

The Parliament will be dissolved by the end of March, and by then the government should secure the votes of 80 lawmakers in order to get the accession negotiations with the EU.

Zaev said he would do everything in his power to secure the necessary two-thirds majority.

"I believe we will provide a two-thirds majority. I hope to reach consensus on this issue, but the law is adopted by a two-thirds majority. My sincere desire is to do so with consensus. If not, I will do everything to secure a two-thirds majority for both the law on the public prosecution and each of the reform laws within the limits of the possibilities. Maybe we will succeed, we may not succeed, but there is no workable job right now, in addition to the quality of life of citizens, we will open the chapters with the EU in parallel," Zaev said.

The only thing that was agreed by Zaev and Mickoski was to form working groups that would iron the differences between the two parties over the draft law on the Public Prosecutor's Office. The negotiations on securing a majority of SDSM will be led by Justice Minister Renata Desoska, while VMRO-DPMNE has no official announcement.

All MPs have received the draft law, and the government is expecting their remarks. They say they will negotiate in an attempt to secure a two-thirds majority without violating the quality of the law.

The Alliance for Albanians, which was part of the majority believed by Prime Minister Zaev, said yesterday that he would not support such a law. Sulejman Rushidi of the Alliance for Albanians says it is unacceptable for the public prosecutor to elect the Council of Public Prosecutors because, according to him, that way SPO is politicized.

"This prosecution cannot function this way. We require the SPO to be elected with a general consensus, we require the SPO to investigate all the bombs from the bombs to the end," Rushidi said, adding that the Alliance for Albanians believes that the SPO did not give the results expected by the public.

The independent parliamentary group, that is, the eight MPs who secured the majority needed for constitutional changes, say that they have not yet decided whether they will support the law that resolves the status of the SPO. MP Emilija Aleksandrova told us that the law is being reviewed and that it should be adopted by consensus of the political parties, as the legal solution for the formation of the SPO was adopted. Asked if it means they would vote for the law, Aleksandrova said that they would first wait to see what the biggest political parties would agree on, then they will decide how they will act.

"First, let's see if the political parties will reach an agreement, let’s see what kind of legal solution they will find, and then we will see how we will act," Aleksandrova said.

Katica Janeva's term ends on September 15 this year, and according to the existing law, the term of the prosecutors of her team also ends on this date. Also, the old law can extend the term for one additional year, while according to the new law the Janeva’s term will be extended only by a half a year, and then there will be a competition for election of a new public prosecutor.

Despite the government's stance that it will not cross the red lines, it remains open to the possibility of the political bargain destroying the purpose for which the SPO was formed to bring justice. Former Interior Minister and longtime politician Pavle Trajanov says that all personnel interventions, legal restrictions, and the extension of competencies is a political bargain, a political agreement that may result in a blockade of the SPO.

"The SPO should continue to work professionally, responsibly and transparently, it should continue with full mandate as before, and the only thing that needs to be done is the 18-month limit, that is, that provision should be deleted and continue to work with the overall mandate. Everything else is political bargaining, which can ultimately result in a blockade of the SPO, whether through staffing, legal restrictions, or expanding competencies. There cannot be two prosecution offices for organized crime. The SPO should continue to work, and complete the work for which it was formed and there shouldn’t be a deadline for filing charges," Trajanov said.

According to the Prime Minister's latest statement, the government had secured 68 MPs, and it remains unclear how it will ensure the remaining votes for the time being.

Frosina Fakova-Serafinovic