North Macedonia PM Survives Sudden Confidence Vote as Opposition Boycotts Vote in Parliament

North Macedonia’s Parliament has shown confidence for North Macedonia PM Zoran Zaev after his request for an on-the-spot vote of confidence of his cabinet.
The unexpected request by Zaev came as the main opposition right-wing VMRO DPMNE party claimed the current wafer-thin majority in parliament was shaky, and that it could soon muster enough support to topple him. But 62 deputies supported the government in the 120-member parliament as opposition boycotted the vote on Wednesday.
Prime Minister Zoran Zaev unexpectedly asked North Macedonia’s parliament to take an immediate vote of confidence in his cabinet after the main opposition right-wing VMRO DPMNE party claimed Zaev’s wafer-thin majority in parliament was shaky, and that it could soon muster enough support to topple him.
Zaev declared in Parliament that was the moment to see how much his government could trust the opposition, which claimed it would topple the government and form a new majority. "These fake news and blockades are creating political uncertainty. I will not allow that.”
As Zaev’s cabinet survived the vote, according to the rulebook, it may not raise the same issue again in parliament for the next three months.
Since the start of the year, VMRO DPMNE leader Hristijan Mickoski has been hinting that Zaev’s government will soon fall and that they can garther enough support for a new majority, led by them.
While so far not a single MP from the majority has withdrawn support for Zaev, recent disputes within the government’s junior ruling partner, the Democratic Union for Integration, DUI, added fuel to speculation that the majority might not be stable.
The dispute within the DUI centered around the threat of one DUI MP, Izet Mexhiti, to seek a no -confidence vote against his own party colleague, Vice Prime Minister Artan Grubi, whom he accused of not doing his job well. However, Mexhiti on Tuesday said they had ironed out their differences within the party and he was still supporting the government.
Speculation about the government’s stability was also fuelled in February when two small parties, the Democratic Alliance and the Liberal Party, who together control three seats, formally exited the “We Can” bloc led by Zaev’s Social Democrats.
However, they insisted they were not withdrawing their support but only opting for more visibility on the political scene, ahead of local elections due in autumn.
VMRO DPMNE leader Hristijan Mickoski said Zaev was afraid to face opposition's arguments testifying the failures of the government in all fields. He called as failures the management of the pandemic and the fight against corruption.
Albanian opposition also criticized Zaev's demand for a confidence vote without debate. As failures Skënder Rexhepi of Albanian opposition koalition included violation of Albanians' human rights.
Zaev is in power since August 31, 2020 after the victory in July 15 elections ruling with the Democratic Union for Integration and some other small parties. /