"Cultural genocide of the Roma" - Reaction to the Ministry of Culture by the coordinator of MSTR, Zoran Dimov

The reaction to the Ministry of Culture and the Minister of Culture Bisera Kostadinovska-Stojcevska says:

 

Dear Minister!

 

The great Macedonian revolutionary Goce Delchev said: "I understand the world as a field for cultural competition between nations" and thus in his thought, he placed culture at the highest and most important level in the world, especially when it comes to mutual competition between nations.

Consequently, and in the context of Delche's thought, it is logical to ask the following questions: "How much do the Roma participate in that cultural competition between nations?" "Do the Roma in Macedonia have an army of cultural soldiers who will compete?" And third, and I think the most important: "Are Roma allowed to compete at all?"

For this year's program for financing projects of national interest in certain areas and activities of culture for 2022, the Ministry of Culture set aside 1,053,000,000 denars or 17 million and 122 thousand euros, which is about 1 million euros more than last year.

This budget also includes projects for promotion of Roma culture, which do not completely exceed a budget of 1,900,000 denars or about 30,000 euros awarded to 13 applicants.

Therefore, Dear Minister, on behalf of the Network for Systemic and Permanent Solutions for the Roma Community in RN Macedonia and on behalf of the cultural workers from the Roma community in the Republic of Northern Macedonia, who for decades are making the right efforts to promote the culture of the Roma community in our country and this REACTION to you, with the opinion that on this year's results from the Ministry of Culture, you have definitely "buried" the Roma culture in the country.

We would not like to list all the applications sent by the cultural workers of the Roma community at this year's competition, but we must emphasize that many of them have a long tradition and successful continuity, which reflected the multiculturalism in the country.

Many of those Applied projects have been maintained for decades and have been successfully implemented and supported which are now simply "extinguishing"

We ask ourselves one thing; Do the Roma community, which pays taxes and enters the Budget of the Republic of Northern Macedonia and splits in the Ministry of Culture, use those funds to finance cultural projects only for Macedonians and Albanians?

How and according to what criteria was the selection and distribution of those funds made?

You mentioned in the press that 3,769 valid applications have passed the filter, and over one billion denars will be allocated to support the projects. Preference is given to domestic "living culture".

It seems that the Roma culture in our country is "clinically dead"!

On behalf of the Roma cultural workers, on behalf of the Roma community, we express our dissatisfaction and reaction on the basis of the published results this year, and we request:

- The most urgent meeting with you consisting of a small delegation of cultural workers from the Roma community

- Review of all submitted projects by the Roma community, and with the members of the Commissions.

- Filtering and explanation of what are the shortcomings in those projects, so that they do not repeat in the future, in the next competitions

We request that this meeting be held as soon as possible - preferably as early as tomorrow, Friday, February 18, 2022.

We would like you to inform us and get feedback on this reaction of ours, otherwise we will be forced to react to all other relevant domestic and foreign institutions, as well as to the Anti-Corruption Commission.

 

With respect

Network for systemic and sustainable solutions

For the integration of Roma in RN Macedonia

Coordinator

Zoran Dimov

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