European Western Balkans

Dominant victory of VMRO-DPMNE in Macedonian elections

Celebration in the VMRO-DPMNE headquarters; Photo: Facebook / VMRO-DPMNE

SKOPJE – The opposition VMRO-DPMNE party has won the parliamentary election in North Macedonia with 43% of the vote and 59 out of 120 seats in parliament, based on 97% of the votes counted. The party’s candidate Gordana Siljanovska Davkova won the second round of the presidential election with a wide margin over the incumbent Stevo Pendarovski.

Nationalist VMRO-DPMNE is thus expected to return to power after seven years in opposition. The party, which was then led by Nikola Gruevski, lost power in 2017 after a prolonged political crisis.

The incumbent social-democratic SDSM suffered a major defeat on Wednesday, winning only 15% of the vote and 18 seats. In 2020, its coalition won 36% of the vote and 46 seats.

The coalition around the ethnic Albanian DUI has won 14% of the vote and 18 seats. The party has been a junior coalition partner of SDSM, as well as VMRO-DPMNE before that.

This time, however, VMRO-DPMNE leader Hristijan Mickoski indicated he would form a government with another coalition of ethnic Albanian parties VLEN, which has won 11% of the vote and 13 seats.

“It is time for SDSM and DUI to go to opposition. The people gave them a lecture and took back their country”, Mickoski said.

He said that the government fell due to “crime, corruption, confiscated state, tenders, nepotism and 100 other consequences”.

Members of VLEN confirmed that they would enter negotiations to form a coalition government, Telma reported.

Asked about the possibility of going to the opposition, DUI leader Ali Ahmeti hinted at resistance to the idea, saying that the country needed “stability and future”.

SDSM leader and, until recently, Prime Minister of the country Dimitar Kovačevski described the results as a serious blow to the party and announced new elections for its leadership.

“SDSM will have to take a good inward look, think about what we have done and what are the results and see what are the weaknesses in the past 4 years and maybe in the last seven years. And more importantly, what should he do to restore and restore the trust of the citizens”, he said.

Left-wing Eurosceptic Levica and movement ZNAM, led by the mayor of Kumanovo Maksim Dimitrievski also won seats in the parliament.

Meanwhile, in the second round of the presidential election, VMRO-DPMNE candidate Gordana Siljanovska Davkova convincingly defeated the incumbent Stevo Pendarovski with 65% of the vote. Pendarovski won only 29%.

Siljanovska Davkova, a professor at the Faculty of Law in Skopje, will be the country’s first female President. She was also the candidate of VMRO in 2019, when she was defeated by Pendarovski.

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