Over 5,000 teams will be in constant communication with every family in the country, while a central system of commissions will be formed to mirror the government ministries, follow everything they do and offer better solutions, measures and activities. The same concept will be applied at both the central and the local level. These are only parts of SDSM’s extensive strategy for non-parliamentary action which, according to leader Zaev, relies on four pillars and whose realization will begin right away, Utrinski vesnik reports.
Zaev informed at the press conference Thursday that the first pillar was named “We Are Working Together” and implied listening to the citizens about their needs and problems and jointly defining real and acceptable solutions. The second pillar is entitled “An Honorable Offer” and consists of uncovering new corruption affairs in top government ranks and keen observations of how every institution works. The remaining two pillars of SDSM’s new strategy are “Strong SDSM” and Partnerships for Democratic Macedonia”.
“We are highly motivated because we know our people and our country need SDSM more than ever considering that the detrimental policies of the current government threaten the subsistence of millions of people. We are aware that a lot of hard work is awaiting us and we are happy. We are aware that the government will try to set us many obstacles but we are not afraid,” Zaev said.
The four teams that defined the strategy also consulted a team of experts that worked with SDSM’s sister parties. In Zaev’s words, over a hundred individual consultations with acclaimed experts in various areas have been made.
“We have also made SWOT analyses testing our policies and standings on a set of focus groups among our supporters as well as among undecided voters. We listened and we made corrections,” he explained.
At the briefing with reporters that followed the press conference and which besides Zoran Zoran was also attended by its deputy Radmila Sekerinska, Secretary General Oliver Spasovski and spokesperson Petre Silegov, it was stressed that the new strategy of the Social Democrats was in fact a policy of “open doors” whose main objective was activation and full mobilization of members and keeping constant and direct communication with citizens.
“This is the manner in which SDSM will act regardless of whether the next elections are held earlier or in 2018,” Sekerinska said.
The MPs of SDSM will stay out of Parliament. Zaev said they will start holding press conferences at which they will analyze the piles of laws passed without letting the public know about it. Open debates will also be held in parks, halls, amphitheaters and other locations.
The leadership of SDSM has no idea for now whether there would be any follow-up to the failed talks with VMRO-DPMNE which stalled over the Social Democrats’ demand for setting up a caretaker government to hold fair and democratic elections, which is utterly unacceptable to VMRO-DPMNE.
Provoked by the question of whether the prime minister is the only one that should arrange a new leaders’ meeting, Zaev said: “Okay, I am not vain so I am inviting them now to a meeting at which we would discuss all our demands. We have retained our stand that six months prior to the next elections, whenever that is, a caretaker government should be formed.”
He also added that the term “caretaker government” could be modified to “four ministries in the hands of the opposition”.
The central board of the party, which adopted the new strategy after a debate of almost four hours Wednesday, excluded from its ranks Ljubica Buralieva and Solza Grceva for disrespecting the party’s decision to boycott Parliament.
For now, according to Zaev, there are no signs that other MPs may follow suit. Asked why the MPs of SDSM filed resignations but did not give up their salaries to which they are entitled as Members of Parliament, Zaev said “this is not Gruevski’s mom’s money.”
“Parliament has verified their mandates by force. Part of the money that the MPs are currently paid will be used for charities,” Zaev said.