“In 2016, an orchard with about 600 trees with a drop-by-drop system was destroyed and I had an estimate to get paid for the damage, but the Ministry of Agriculture headed by former Minister Ljupco Nikoloski did not personally want to pay me the money”. This was stated today by the farmer from Skopje’s Aracinovo, Ekrem Jaji.
“I’ve been bullied for two, three years, “go here go there”, so in the end I was told to get a party membership card, and I said I don’t have a card from any party. Now I have heard in the media that there was a deputy minister, so I asked for his help, says farmer Ekrem Jaji.
He adds that the orchard was destroyed in a 2016 flood in the Skopje region.
– For all this I have an estimate, as much as I had to pay and documents, and I have been dragged on for almost three years, “come tomorrow, come the day after tomorrow, come in a month, after two months”, and so far I have no answer, I ask for a solution whether they would pay me or not, while they share the money within the party, stated Ekrem.
The disappointed farmer says his flood damage is about 10,000 euros, and to date 2020 has not yet seen a penny of promised money. He is convinced that once they look for party membership cards, they share the same principle.
Deputy Agriculture Minister Cvetan Tripunovski says that this farmer has unfortunately been mistreated for years and has been sent from institution to institution because he is seeking his own money in terms of damages from 2016.
– The ministry, the paying agency and even the cabinet of then-Prime Minister Zoran Zaev transfer their responsibilities and simply manipulate Ekrem with his well-deserved money. He also told us that he was manipulated on a party basis and was a member of SDSM. What I can do at this point is that I will do my best to check this case and why it is still late with this payment which has really suffered great damage in the flood in 2016, says Tripunovski.
He adds that he will be the protector of farmers and urges anyone with same or similar problems to come to the ministry and report their problem.
– I am not interested in a political party, I am not interested in religion, I just do not divide the farmers and for me those people are the people who feed the Republic of Macedonia outside the borders. From what I can confirm in this case that the documentation is complete with a report from the State Agriculture Inspectorate which states that the fruit plantation was really destroyed and that the money should simply have reached Ekrem, adds Tripunovski.
The interim minister emphasized that this must end once and for all.
– The dignity of the Macedonian farmer has been destroyed and this is just one example where really what I am saying is actually substantiated by facts. Ekrem also told me that he was not paid subsidies for the past year, Tripunovski said.