International Information Centre for Balkan Studies

Serbia’s President announces big purge in Government

September 3, 2019

Ahead of the next spring general and local elections, Serbia's President Aleksandar Vucic has announced the dismissal of at least a half of the cabinet members, mostly members of his ruling Serbian Progressive Party (SNS), but did not name any of them, N1 reported.

In what Vucic’s political opponents have already branded “a functionary campaign,” he only said that the current ministers would be replaced with younger people, without saying why or who would go, or who those young officials would be.

Vladimir Djukanovic, an SNS official, predicted a while ago that the ‘victims’ could be the ministers from the ruling coalition parties.

Vucic, however, did not mention anyone, as he hadn’t done before when ahead of the elections or the principal party meetings in 2012, 2016 and earlier this year promised big purges.

Analysts say the latest move could be understood as an attempt to motivate traditionally passive young voters amid the opposition campaign for the election boycott, but also to inspire his aides to work better.

"To start with, the president of the largest party would like to motivate his closest aides to make sure they will present their results more visible in the campaign. Besides, that is a message to SNS voters that no one is irreplaceable,” Boban Stojanovic from the Political Sciences Faculty in Belgrade told N1.

On Tuesday, Vucic visited Serbia’s southern towns of Leskovac and Medvedja, promising 42.5 Euros one-time aid to pensioners by the end of the year and rise in the medical staff wages up to 15 percent in November.

He also promised new investments in sports stadiums in Leskovac and several other towns across Serbia.

In Medvedja, where the local vote is due on September 8, Vucic has taken part in SNS pre-election campaign gathering, also promising investments in local roads and infrastructure in the municipality.

Medvedja is a part of the south-western region of Presevo Valley mostly populated by ethnic Albanians together with the towns of Presevo and Bujanovac, and the only one where the Serbs create a majority.

Source: http://rs.n1info.com/English/NEWS/a522858/Serbia-s-President-campaigns-in-southern-Serbia.html

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