The citizens of the Municipality of Bogdanci with a great majority said NO to the mines at the Referendum voting today. There was a turnout of 60,78%, or 4,205 of a total of 6.918 registered voters in the municipality. In terms of the question “Are you in favor for the construction of Kazandol mine to continue”, 4,120 citizens voted against, and only 71 in favor. As to the question “Should opening of other mines in the municipality of Bogdanci be allowed?”, 4,126 voted against, while only 66 voted in favor.
The local authorities are obliged to respect the will of the citizens.
More than 10 citizens could not realize their right, as they did not figure on the Voters Register.
At one polling station it is noted that the UV lamp had not been working.
CIVIL’s observers also report that some members of the electoral boards are not sufficiently trained.
Pressures are also noted. In the last 24 hours, many citizens of the Municipality of Bogdanci received phone calls from VMRO-DPMNE activists not to go to today’s referendum voting, or to vote in favor of opening mines, that is, for continuation of the work of the Kazandol mine.
Even though the initiative “Save Bogdanci” is supported by the Municipal Council, namely, by all the parties, as well as civil society organizations, pressures against the success of the referendum are nevertheless evident, which makes it obvious that the party structures at the local and central level have different positions in terms of this issue.
In the statement for the media, immediately after the closing of the polling stations, Xhabir Deralla, on behalf of CIVIL – Center for Freedom, congratulated the citizens of the Municipality of Bogdanci for the successfully implemented referendum.
Just as with the Referendum in Gevgelia, CIVIL was the only national organization observing the referendum in Bogdanci from the 14 accredited observers.