Macedonian opposition party nominates law professor as presidential candidate

Macedonian opposition party nominates law professor as presidential candidate
Presidential candidate Gordana Siljanovska-Davkova flanked by incumbent Gjorge Ivanov (L) and VMRO-DPMNE leader Hristijan Mickoski (R).
By Valentina Dimitrievska in Skopje February 17, 2019

North Macedonia’s main opposition party, VMRO-DPMNE, nominated law professor Gordana Siljanovska-Davkova as its candidate for the upcoming presidential election on February 16.

Siljanovska-Davkova, who is not a party member, was selected at the party’s congress held in the southwestern city of Struga. 

The first round of the North Macedonia presidential election will be held on April 21. This will be the sixth presidential vote in the country. The new president will replace Gjorge Ivanov, also a former law professor, who was supported by the now opposition VMRO-DPMNE party. Ivanov has served two five-year mandates

408 of the 519 party delegates voted for Siljanovska-Davkova. Her main rival was VMRO-DPMNE MP Vlatko Gjorcev, who won only 80 votes for his candidacy.

“Today I called on VMRO-DPMNE as the biggest political force in Macedonia to unite with all of us in a common front of those humiliated and deeply offended by the irresponsible moves of Prime Minister Zoran Zaev,” Siljanovska-Davkova said.

Siljanovska-Davkova is a harsh opponent of the Prespa name deal with Greece, under which the country name was recently changed to North Macedonia, and the adoption of the language law that made Albanian the second official language in the country.

The governing SDSM party still has to decide on its candidate.