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In North Macedonia, young people are on the electoral lists, but rarely on wining positions
The average age of candidates for MPs on the parliamentary elections in North Macedonia held in 2020 was 42,5 years. Even though young people have a relatively high number of candidates (19,17% under 29 years), they were more often on positions with lower chances to win an MP seat. These are some of the findings of the analysis “Youth Political Absence: Analysis of the Position of Youth on the Parliamentary Elections 2020” published by the WFD office in North Macedonia.
Тhe analysis was conducted during the parliamentary elections in July 2020, and provides an insight in two areas: the presence of young people on the candidate lists for the parliamentary elections and the representation of youth policies in the political party programmes.
The political programme analysis show that young people represent an important topic in the programmes of only some of the parties and coalitions running on the elections, a peculiar finding given that youth constitute a large portion of the electorate. The most frequently mentioned policies for youth are in the areas of economy and education. The proposed policies among different political parties and coalitions are often similar or overlap, indicating a potential for consensus and cooperation between political parties on youth policies.
What is evident in the programmes is also the lack of presence of current topics of youth interest, such as the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, euro-integration processes, justice, youth rights and environment.
Looking at the positions of young candidates on the lists, it should come as no surprise that the number of elected young MPs is relatively low, particularly compared to the percentage of young candidates on the parliamentary lists. None the less, the young MPs elected in Parliament established an inter-party Club for Youth Issues and Policies, for the second time in the Parliament’s history.
The research points out that political parties should strive to increase the involvement of young people in their structures and to treat young people as an active stakeholder in their programmes. Following elections, political parties should discuss on joint acceptable measures in areas of common interest in their agendas, and one potential platform should be the MPs Club for Youth Affairs and Policies.
The analysis was prepared by researchers Martin Galevski, PhD, and Jovana Gjorgjiovska, MPhil.
The analysis is available in Macedonian and Albanian language on the following links:
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