Macedonian parliamentary election, 2008: Wikis

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2006 Republic of Macedonia 2012 ›
Macedonian parliamentary election, 2008
All 120 seats to the Sobranie
June 1, 2008
First party Second party
Gruevski.jpg Radmila-Sekerinska-conference.jpg
Leader Nikola Gruevski Radmila Šekerinska
Party VMRO–DPMNE SDSM
Last election 45 seats (VMRO–DPMNE-led coalition) 32 seats (SDSM-led coalition)
Seats won 63 (VMRO–DPMNE-led coalition) 27 (SDSM-led coalition)
Seat change +18 -5
Popular vote 481.602 233.362
Percentage 48.80% 23.65%
Republic of Macedonia

This article is part of the series:
Politics and government of
the Republic of Macedonia







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Early parliamentary elections were held in the Republic of Macedonia on 1 June 2008[1] after the Assembly of the Republic of Macedonia voted to dissolve itself on 12 April 2008.[2] The early election was proposed by the Democratic Union for Integration after Greece vetoed Macedonia's bid to join NATO at the 2008 Bucharest summit over the Macedonia naming dispute, and the request was supported by the ruling coalition of VMRO–DPMNE and the Democratic Party of Albanians; the opposition Social Democratic Union of Macedonia and Liberal Democratic Party boycotted the vote (thus, 70 of 120 MPs voted in favour of the motion, with all others absent from the vote).[3] The elections were not due until 2010.[4] This is the first time since independence in 1991 that Macedonia has had to call early parliamentary elections.[5]

According to a poll of 1,108 citizens taken between 11 April and 15 April 2008, VMRO-DPMNE had a 29% rating, followed by SDSM with 11% and DUI with 10%.[6] A poll from 24 April and 25 April 2008 gave VMRO-DPMNE 26%, SDSM 12%, DUI 11% and DPA 7%.[7]

The two major parties formed coalitions before the elections. VMRO-DPMNE has formed a coalition called "For a Better Macedonia" with eighteen smaller parties, including the Democratic Alliance, the Socialist Party of Macedonia, the Democratic Renewal of Macedonia and the Party of Justice. SDSM has formed the eight-party coalition "Sun – Coalition for Europe", which includes the minor parliamentary party New Social Democratic Party.[8] Recent polls saw For a Better Macedonia lead with 37% to Sun's 18%, followed by DUI with 11% and DPA with 6%.[9]

Due to violence on the polling day, the election had been repeated in parts of three election districts (193 polling stations[10] out of 2,976[11]) on 15 June 2008; about 170,000 voters were eligible to vote in the rerun,[12] and the results determined which of the two main Albanian parties will join VMRO–DPMNE in government.[13]

Contents

Outcome

Soon after the announcement of the preliminary results by the State Election Committee and the parties in the evening after the elections, it was clear that the coalition Za podobra Makedonija (For a Better Macedonia) is the absolute winner winning majority in the Macedonian parliament. According to the unofficial and preliminary results, this coalition led by VMRO-DPMNE won 64 out of 120 seats with about 46.7% of the vote, while the opposite coalition Sonce – Koalicija za Evropa (Sun – Coalition for Europe) led by SDSM won 28 seats and about 22.2% of the vote. The DUI got approximately 11.3% and the DPA 10.1% of the vote.[14]

The leader of VMRO-DPMNE and the winning coalition, also current prime-minister of the Republic of Macedonia, Nikola Gruevski announced the victory saying that this is the first time in the history of the Republic of Macedonia, a party or coalition to be voted so many seats in the Macedonian parliament which shows that the Government of the Republic of Macedonia has worked very hard for the previous 20 months and the citizens rewarded that.

The leader of SDSM and its coalition, Radmila Sekerinska admitted the loss, saying that she takes the responsibility for that. She also reminded that the outcome of the elections is about 2:1 in favor of VMRO-DPMNE's coalition and not 3:1 as the rating of the parties was before the elections which shows that the campaign led by her showed to be successful.

The outcome of the elections in the Albanian bloc of parties are not yet known due to irregularities in the election process, as voting in many parts of the Republic with dominant Albanian populations is expected to be repeated. According to the preliminary results, the Democratic Union for Integration has a slight lead over the Democratic Party of Albanians among the Albanian electorate. However, both parties claim a large margin of victory. As such, both parties are asking for a repetition of the elections, since both claim multiple polls show them to be the winners among the Albanian portion of the electorate.

The Party for Democratic Prosperity announced after the election on 3 June 2008 that it would merge with the DPA in the next few days, effectively making the DPA the larger of the two main Albanian parties and increasing its chances in the repeated elections.[15]

e • d  Summary of the 1 June 2008 Assembly of the Republic of Macedonia election results
Parties and coalitions Votes % Seats
For a Better Macedonia Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization–Democratic Party for Macedonian National Unity 481,602 48.80 63
Socialist Party of Macedonia
Democratic Union
Democratic Renewal of Macedonia
Democratic Party of Turks
Democratic Party of Serbs
Union of Roma in Macedonia
Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization–Macedonia
United Party for Emancipation
Party of Justice
Party of Democratic Action of Macedonia
Party of Vlachs of Macedonia
Party for Roma Integration
People's Movement of Macedonia
Democratic Party of the Bosniaks
Party of the Greens
Democratic Union of the Roma
Workers' Agricultural Party of the Republic of Macedonia
Party for Full Emancipation of the Roma
Sun – Coalition for Europe Social Democratic Union of Macedonia 233,362 23.65 27
New Social Democratic Party
Liberal Democratic Party
Liberal Party of Macedonia
New Alternative
Green Party of Macedonia
Party of Pensioners of the Republic of Macedonia
Democratic Union of Vlachs in Macedonia
Democratic Union for Integration 125,997 12.77 18
Democratic Party of Albanians 83,678 8.48 11
Party for European Future 14,473 1.47 1
Albanian Democratic Union 6,513 0.66
Social Democratic Party of Macedonia 6,406 0.65
Party for Democratic Prosperity 5,209 0.53
Party of Free Democrats 4,362 0.44
Radical Party of the Serbs in Macedonia 4,323 0.44
Father's Macedonian Organization for Radical Renewal – Vardar-Egej-Pirin 4,317 0.44
Movement for National Unity of Turks 3,782 0.38
Union of Tito's Left Forces 3,760 0.38
Group of Electors PM 2,744 0.28
Internal Macedonian Revolutionary Organization–Democratic Party 2,335 0.24
Permanent Macedonian Radical Unification 1,856 0.19
National Democratic Union 1,654 0.17
Group of Electors PG 449 0.05
Total (turnout 57%) 1,015,034 100.0 120
Source: State Election Commission, SE Times, IHT

Violence

The tense elections involved episodes of violence, mostly between rival ethnic Albanian parties, the DUI and DPA. Shootings were reported in the Albanian-populated North-West of the country.[16] A gunman opened fire on a Macedonian police unit patrolling the village of Aračinovo, north of the capital Skopje.[17] One person was killed and several were wounded.[18] Soon afterwards, the State Electoral Commission said voting had been halted at 10 to 15 polling stations in and around the village, a stronghold of Albanian rebels who fought government forces in Macedonia's 2001 conflict. At least 10 people have been arrested in connection with the violence. They included Agim Krasniqi, a commander of the guerrilla Albanian National Army.[19]

Separately, a spokeswoman for the Democratic Union for Integration (DUI), the largest ethnic Albanian opposition party, said the party's headquarters in Skopje had come under fire. Also, two of its local officials in the ethnic Albanian Tetovo area were briefly detained by an unknown armed group before being rescued unharmed by police.[19]

The situation appeared to have calmed down by the time polls closed at 7 p.m. (1700 GMT).[19]

There were also reports of ballot-stuffing and allegations of fraud in villages around Skopje during the early hours of voting.[20]

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Reactions

The ethnic Albanian Democratic Union for Integration (DUI) leader, former guerrilla commander Ali Ahmeti, blamed the rival Democratic Party of Albanians (DPA) and the police for "provocations, violence and psychological terror". "What happened today is a black mark on Macedonia," he said.[19]

"The situation in the country overall is stable," Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski told reporters. "The incidents are small in number and mostly in ethnic Albanian areas. There will certainly be a repeat vote in those areas in two weeks."[19]

On June 13, Gruevski warned that any political activists trying to repeat the violence of June 1 in order to collect votes will face consequences of the law, stating he "would not like to be in their shoes". He also stated that VMRO-DPNE will not form a coalition with any parties involved in such actions.[21]

References

  1. ^ http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2008/04/12/europe/EU-POL-Macedonia-Elections.php International Herald Tribune
  2. ^ http://afp.google.com/article/ALeqM5jPYpEVw6NkAP_Tuj2eW41aYE5m0g AFP (Google News)
  3. ^ http://www.earthtimes.org/articles/show/198446,macedonian-parliament-dissolved-early-elections-by-june.html The Earth Times
  4. ^ http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/7343933.stm BBC News
  5. ^ "Изборите закажани за 1 јуни (Elections appointed on 1 June)" (in Macedonian). A1 News. 2008-04-12. http://www.a1.com.mk/vesti/default.aspx?VestID=91752. Retrieved 2002-04-13.  
  6. ^ A1 News poll
  7. ^ Governing VMRO-DPMNE First in Macedonia: Angus Reid Global Monitor
  8. ^ Macedonia's VMRO-DPMNE sign pre-election coalition deal with 18 small parties (SETimes.com)
  9. ^ Campaigning officially begins in Macedonia (SETimes.com)
  10. ^ Macedonia: Number of re-vote polling stations goes high - dtt-net.com
  11. ^ Macedonia to stage election re-run due to irregularities - People's Daily Online
  12. ^ Mazedonien annulliert Wahlergebnisse in 193 Wahllokalen (International, NZZ Online)
  13. ^ Macedonia to conduct revote in 193 polling stations (SETimes.com)
  14. ^ B92 - News - Region - Grueski victorious in violence-marred Macedonia polls
  15. ^ Makfax vesnik
  16. ^ BBC NEWS | Europe | Macedonian poll marred by unrest
  17. ^ Tompsett, R. (2008-06-01). "Violence mars election day in Macedonia". France 24. http://www.france24.com/en/20080601-violence-continues-check-macedonian-vote-elections&navi=MONDE. Retrieved 2008-06-01.  
  18. ^ "Deadly gun attack mars Macedonian elections". AFP. 2008-06-01. http://afp.google.com/article/ALeqM5guhqWS1P92Ymzfh-hNQ1w6fIfcXw. Retrieved 2008-06-01.  
  19. ^ a b c d e Macedonia PM wins election in shadow of violence - Mirror.co.uk
  20. ^ "Shootings mar Macedonia polls". Al Jazeera. 2008-06-01. http://english.aljazeera.net/NR/exeres/1C5A35FB-17B7-4FDE-B935-FC8FA89EECEA.htm. Retrieved 2008-06-01.  
  21. ^ Mihailoski, Goce (2008-06-13). "Груевски нема да коалицира со партија со нелегитимни мандати (Gruevski will not form a coalition with a party with illegitimate mandates)" (in Macedonian). A1 News. http://www.a1.com.mk/vesti/default.aspx?VestID=94104. Retrieved 2008-06-14.  

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