ELECTIONS Stojanovski: The Voters Register is a risk, but the security community is ready for elections
“The processes that cause a certain political friction, starting with the Voters Register, and so forth, can cause security problems during the elections”, considers Trpe Stojanovski from the Faculty of Security in Skopje, when it comes to the social-political moment the country is in. Stojanovski considers that Macedonia will handle the challenges that the security institutions will face during the regular presidential and possible early parliamentary elections.
CIVIL Media: Professor Stojanovski, we are ahead of presidential elections and possible new parliamentary elections. What is the role of the security community in ensuring a democratic setting and, above all, a safe setting for voting?
STOJANOVSKI: Macedonia has a strong tradition, a rich tradition of elections in our country, and various experiences that are related to the election cycles. A lesson that has been learned, and in general now, when we are expecting the negotiations with the European Union to start, is that any such elections, the presidential ones are certain, the others I am not sure are needed at this moment, are a challenge in which Macedonia has to show a high degree of capacity and potential for holding quality, just and lawful electoral activities.
You mentioned the security community, and a large part of the tasks, having in consideration the Macedonian experience, are delegated by it. What is a positive side in my opinion is that in these recent years, with partnership of many international organizations, steps have been made that have already been integrated in the security community, although more specifically we are focused more on the Ministry of Interior, which is the pillar also of the body of institutions that are responsible for the security and in general, an institution that has both preventative and criminal-justice mechanisms for dealing with possible deviations and offences.
I think that an important step has been made. As far as I know, many of these mechanisms are integrated and they are part of the everyday work of the MOI. Not only when it comes to the electoral processes, but also much earlier, they are activated and exist as continuous, but especially ahead of the election processes, trainings…Reminding, and in some way, identifying the role of the police, I suppose is equally important also for the other institutions that are in charge of the security, is raised to the highest priority level, and that is an assumption that the institutions that are supposed to provide security, will be a service in the the sphere when the citizens expect security. I think they will respond again to the task that is set before them.
However, indirectly, many of the processes in our country, especially ones that mean some kind of political friction, starting with the Voters Register, and so forth, can cause certain problems and difficulties that can further on, if we assess the risks, also lead to certain disruptions that will affect the security sphere. Security is a pretty sensitive matter, our impressions and definitions can vary in terms of what we are expecting from the institutions competent in the security sphere, but I believe that the Republic of Macedonia, especially in this social-political moment, will handle the challenges that the security institutions will face during the presidential elections, and possible other elections with which the community will be faced.
Igor K. Ilievski
Camera: Dehran Muratov
Photo: Аngela Petrovska
Editing and text editing: Biljana Jordanovska