Thursday, 17 November 2011
ADDRESS OF THE PRESIDENT OF THE ASSEMBLY OF THE REPUBLIC OF MACEDONIA ON THE OCCASION OF THE 20 YEARS FROM THE CONSTITUTION OF THE REPUBLIC OF MACEDONIA
Distinguished President of the Republic of Macedonia, Mr. Gjorge Ivanov,
Distinguished Prime Minister of the Republic of Macedonia, Mr. Nikola Gruevski,
Distinguished President of the Constitutional Court of the Republic of Macedonia, Mr. Branko Naumovski
Distinguished Former President of the Republic of Macedonia, Mr. Branko Crvenkovski,
Distinguished Former Presidents of the Assembly of the Republic of Macedonia,
Distinguished Former Prim Ministers of the Republic of Macedonia,
Distinguished Representatives of the Judiciary and the Religious Communities,
Colleagues MPs, This year Macedonia celebrates!
This year Macedonia remembers!
The nation celebrated the independence on the 8th September;
On the 8th September for this reason the citizens were united under the same sun.
Finally, on this day God showed us that we are all His children, that Macedonia is our country and that the future is our mutual challenge! We shouted proudly, and with thundery voices we continue to shout
MAY MACEDONIA BE ETERNAL AND TIMELESS.
The occasion today is our new great anniversary!
20 years since the adoption of the Constitution.
20 years since the adoption of the document which founded the state and legal foundations which are rock solid.
20 years of independence and sovereignty
Ladies and Gentlemen,
The great American politician Andrew Johnson said: “Honest conviction is my courage; the Constitution is my guide.“
That is why today we should all, regardless of our differences, say that the DEVELOPMENT OF MACEDONIA HAS NO OTHER ALTERNATIVE. CONFIRMATION FOR THIS IS OUR COURAGE AND DETERMINATION, AND THE CONSTITUTION OF THIS COUNTRY IS OUR SINGLE GUIDE.
„OUR CONSTITUTION WORKS”, said another great American statesman.
We can all say today that THE MACEDONIAN CONSTITUTION HAS STOOD THE TEST OF TIME,
OUR STATE IS FOUNDED ON THE RULE OF LAW, NOT ON THE RULE OF PEOPLE,
MACEDONIA, 20 YEARS LATER IS A STATE OF LAW AND LEGISLATION - today we all say proudly.
The Macedonian independence was a process which started with the first multi-party elections. The Declaration of sovereignty, which was
adopted by the MPs from the first parliamentary composition, arose from these elections. This Declaration was our guide for the first democratic Constitution of our state. The 8th September referendum followed this great goal; on this referendum, the citizens gave the politicians the needed legitimacy to walk the path to independence. Finally, on the 17th November 1991, our colleagues MPs wrote history, adopting the highest legislative act, engraving their work in our collective history.
At that time the Assembly of the Republic of Macedonia defined its pivotal role in the state, in other words, it confirmed its role as a House in which, in a democratic procedure, the key state interests and will be define and the essential laws and other decisions for the modern political, security and cultural establishment and valorization of the Republic of Macedonia will be adopt.
On 17th November 1991 the dream of many generations of Macedonians for sovereign state which values the human being as an individual, and respects human rights and freedoms, a state with a civil dimension which means political pluralism, with market economy based on private property.
In those times of turmoil, when in former Yugoslavia the voice of reason was replaced with the force of weapons, the first President of independent Macedonia said: “TODAY, WITH THE NEW CONSTITUTION, WE HAVE LAID THE LEGISLATIVE FOUNDATIONS OF MACEDONIA, AND I AM AGAIN FILLED WITH PRIDE AND HOPE THAT THE VICTIMS IN ALL OUR REBELLIONS AND UPRIZINGS WERE NOT IN VAIN. THE TIME OF SLAVERY, DIVISION AND TYRANNY, EXILE AND HOMELESSNESS AND BEHIND US. HISTORY SPOKE AND WITNESSED THE ANCIENT POWER OF OUR NATION TO WITHHOLD AND PRESERVE THE MACEDONIAN LANGUAGE, SONG AND STORY.”
In this context, today, dear friends, allow me on my personal behalf and on behalf of the colleagues - Members of this composition of the Assembly, to express our deepest appreciation to:
- The First President of the Republic of Macedonia, Mr. Kiro Gligorov;
- The First Prime Minister of the Republic of Macedonia , Mr. Nikola Kljusev;
- The President of the Fist Multi-Party Assembly and the Chairman of the Constitutional Committee, Mr. Stojan Andov, and to all the Members of the Constitutional Committee of the Assembly, as well as to the Members of the Expert Group;
- All the MPs, political parties and persons that contributed to this noble statehood goal.
The result of these efforts is our Constitution which:
- Respects the modern democratic benefits;
- Expresses the historic continuity and aspiration for freedom of the Macedonian Nation;
- Provides broadest guarantees for exercise of the human rights and freedoms of our fellow citizens belonging to the Albanian, Turk, Vlach, Serbian and Roma ethnic belonging liveing in Macedonia.
The Constitution is the final act of one painful and difficult historic process, which started with the Manifest of the Krushevo Republic and the Decisions from ASNOM.
As a founding state legislative act, the Constitution starts from the citizen.
The Constitution defines the Republic of Macedonia as a legal state in which the three branches of power are divided, and which fully respects private property and market values.
That is why the international community assessed and accepted the Constitution as a modern state act which incorporates all the principles which define a state as democratic.
One more thing!
Even then, our strategic priorities regarding our accession in the Euro-Atlantic institutions were clearly defined. The Republic of Macedonia, as a result of the wise policy of the authorities, managed to finalize the process of independence and to maintain the good relations with all former Yugoslavia countries. Unfortunately, our southern neighbor imposed an absurd dispute over our constitutional name, which was used for centuries as our national, linguistic and cultural identification, being recognized and accepted by the European and world civilization.
The adoption of the Contrition initiated one of the greatest challenges we face even today - the adoption of laws which refine the legal system of the state. The ratification of the Stability Pact, and later, receiving a candidate status for EU Membership, provided a new dimension to this process. I can rightfully say that we are doing this much better, which is seen from the fact that the latest three Reports from the Europe Commission contain a recommendation for opening accession negotiations.
Ladies and gentlemen,
The Constitution as the highest state legal act is a dynamic category which, depending on the overall social and economic conditions, is changing with adoption of amendments. We have witnessed these processes in the past 20 years, so a total of 32 Constitutional Amendments have been adopted - from constitutional interventions referring to the judicial authority, amendments referring to the rights and freedoms of the citizens, as well as amendments deriving from the Framework Agreement. Common characteristic in the adoption of all of them was the transparent process and the inclusion of the political entities and the professional public, and the consensus in their adoption. Also, it is important that these amendments did not change the founding character of the state authority.
The Republic of Macedonia continues to be a unitary state of the Macedonian nation and all the ethic communities.
Macedonia continues to be parliamentary democracy, founded on the citizen.
The Republic of Macedonia continues to be a legal state, where no one is above the law and where the market values rule.
History teaches us that, when adopting key national decision, high level of consensus and support of the citizens are necessary.
We cannot say that the past 20 years have been easy or simple for the Republic of Macedonia. On the contrary, we have overcome many difficulties and challenges; we were faced with temptations and situations which required determined and significant decisions for the future and the existence of independent Republic of Macedonia.
20 years ago, when we decided to establish independent and sovereign Macedonia, we had very high level of political consensus and support from the citizens, which was strongly expressed on the Referendum on 8th September. This unity on the most important issues for the future of our state was demonstrated in the coming period as well. I am convinced that this is also the case today, when we are being blocked in the efforts to achieve our strategic determination for membership in NATO and the EU.
If we sincerely want to continue with the realization of the ideals of the Ilinden fighters from 1903 and 1944, of the National Liberation fighters, as well as of the citizens who clearly expressed their will on 8th September - THEN WE HAVE TO BE CONSTANTLY AWARE OF THE MAGNITUDE OF THE RESPONSIBILITY AS POLITICIANS, REGARDLESS ON WHICH SIDE WE SIT IN THE ASSEMBLY HALL!
When it comes to issues concerning the defense of the Macedonian identity and the constitutional name, as well as to other challenges regarding the European and Euro-Atlantic integration – WE MUST NOT ALLOW DIVISIONS CAUSED BY OUR POLITICAL OR ANY OTHER DIFFERENCES.
On the contrary!
THE WORD UNITY IS THE KEY!
THE WORD UNANIMITY IS OUR MOTIVE!
THE WORD COOPERATION IS OUR GREATEST ALLY!
… Or using the words from the wisdom of the world, as well as of the great leaders, we must shout out: ONE COUNTRY, ONE CONSTITUTION, and ONE DESTINY!
MAY OUR MOTHERLAND, THE REPUBLIC OF MACEDONIA BE ETERNAL!