DIGITALIZATION: FOREIGN CHANNELS MORE ATTRACTIVE, DOMESTIC CHANNELS FAIL SIMPLE FEATURES SUCH AS TELETEXT

Residents of Novo Selo, in Demir Hisar, do not have a major choice on their TV sets, and learn about what is happening beyond their place of residence solely on the three channels emitted by the public broadcasting service – MRTV, including the parliament channel. Although they have procured receivers to follow other channels with national concession, whose signals should reach their homes, they are still denied this service. However, they are not alone in this predicament. According to statements of residents in other rural areas, they as well are not satisfied with the offer that should have been achieved with digitalization, which had been announced as revolution of televised offers. Many and varied features were promised: subtitles in several languages, faster teletext, online payment, electronic programme guide, interactive television… While it was expected to contribute to improved media...

SCOOP research: State land divided to officials

Argument about a state land in Vevcani. Around 267 hectares under the Struga village of Vevcani have two tenants. The land is state owned and Ministry of Agriculture offers it to two owners. First under public call, issued in situations where state land is already planted and the farmer has not taken out a lease, and then it is given to public announcement. The company “Eco Project” applied, run by Maja Aluloska, Mitre Aluloski’s daughter from Vevcani. Hazelnuts were planted in 2009 and later drip irrigation was implemented. Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management, then headed by Ljupco Dimovski, current MP of the Socialist Party, approved Mitre Aluloski and his daughter to lease the land under the village of Vevcani. He sent a lease agreement, which the family Aluloski signed and sent it for signature to the Ministry...

The mystery of one building: in the center of Skopje, but “invisible” to the institutions

Centar Municipality has no records of the Telecom building, a striking eight-store building in the center of Skopje. Built next to the Stone Bridge and located on Macedonia square, this building is shrouded in mystery. Apart from the parties, no one knows how much the land was purchased for, how much tax has been paid for this building and what utility fees have been paid for it. Minister of Transport and Communications, Vlado Misajloski does not even know which building is Telecom. “In the archives of the municipality Centar there is no archive box for the given building, that is no materials, no files, for the Urbanism services of Centar Municipality could answer your questions”, says the official response from the Centar Municipality to the request that SCOOP-Macedonia submitted under the Law on Free Access to Public Information. According...

SCOOP research: MPs – one discussion 400 Euros

  DOCUMENTATION1 DOCUMENTATION2 Sashko’s phone alarm from Kocani rings at 5:10 am sharp, when he wakes up to get ready for another day at work. He is a worker in one of the foreign investments in Eastern Macedonia, where the day should bring a daily fee of 500 denars. “I earn 12,000 denars salary. I work 25 days a month, it means every Saturday. One week first shift, the other second and then third shift”, complains 33-year-old man from Kocani. Sashko works 8 hours per day or 200 working hours per month. “200 hours for 200 Euros“, Sashko comments bitterly. In the last parliamentary elections he voted for someone to represent him in parliament. His MP also earns 200 Euros, but unlike Sasko, he earns that money in just one day. According to the analysis by the Centre for...

Ministerial salaries: half a million Euros only for salaries

  DOCUMENTATION One hundred thirty-three thousand denars or more than 2,000 Euros is the salary that former Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski has left the PM’s chair with on Ilindenska bb St. Although this is not the highest amount compared to other offices in the state, and it does not make it exclusive, but it is unique that only in our country it is a real feat to get to such seemingly ordinary information that in neighboring countries can be found out with just two clicks. Everywhere in the region salaries of ministers and officials are public information that can be found on the websites of local agencies for fight against corruption or commission for prevention of conflict of interest. Here it took us two months to prove the public interest to institutions and through petitions to come to the...

Pre-election employments: More than 1,000 new utility employees in just two years

DOCUMENTATION Obsolete equipment, reduced efficiency and disgruntled citizens. This is the image of utilities, where it seems that nothing changes except the number of employees. The research of the Center for Investigative Journalism SCOOP Macedonia showed evidence that the number of utility employees increases for every election. In 2005 there were 6,034 utility employees, in 2008 and 2009 on the eve of local elections further 1,000 people were employed. More than 1,000 people were employed before the local elections in 2013 and parliamentary elections in 2014. Using the Law on Free Access to Public Information we sent requests to all utilities via municipalities which are their founders and we received a response from 61 municipality. The total number of inhabitants living in municipalities that submitted answers is 1.715 million. “The reasons for such situation should be sought in politics”,...

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