Macedonians in Serbia elect the new National Council in minority elections

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Regular elections were held in Serbia for the National Councils of 23 national minorities, including the Macedonian minority, the MIA correspondent from Belgrade reported.

The Macedonian minority held the elections for the members of the National Council in Belgrade, in the National Assembly by means of an electoral assembly, due to an insufficient number of voluntarily registered voters in the Special Electoral List.

Fifty-seven registered electors participated in the elections out of 59 who voted for one election list – “Borche Velichkovski List” which was elected after voting with a majority of 56 votes, as well as 23 members of the new Macedonian National Council.

Elections through an electoral assembly are a way of indirectly electing members of the national councils, because in those elections not all members of the national minority registered in the special voter list have the right to vote, but only those who registered in a legally regulated procedure and fulfilled the legal conditions to be electors (voters), that is, to elect members of their NSNM at an electoral assembly.

National councils are the most important institutions of national minorities which, according to the Law, are entrusted with “the public powers to participate in decision-making or to decide independently on certain issues in the field of culture, education, information and the official use of language and writing in order to achieve the collective rights of the national minority to self-governance in those areas”.

According to the 2011 census in Serbia, unlike previous years, the number of Macedonians is decreasing, or 22,755 people declared themselves as belonging to the Macedonian nationality, which is about 0.32 percent of the total number of inhabitants in Serbia. According to unofficial estimates, over 100,000 Macedonians live in Serbia.

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