As part of the PEP project supported by the Washington-based Foundation NED, SCOOP continues to systematically monitor, investigate and analyze the properties of current mayors of local governments in the Republic of North Macedonia. Where did they gain the property from? Do they have a basis for it? How will the structure of their property change and what lies behind those changes?
Authors: Angela Rajchevska and Bjanka Stankovic
The ten richest mayors in the Republic of North Macedonia weigh about 30 million Euros. One of them is from VMRO-DPMNE, first on the list, while six gravitate or are members of the SDSM. Of the three mayors of the Alliance for Albanians party, all three are on the list of the top 10 richest mayors.
First on the list is the mayor of Kavadarci Mitko Jancev, followed by Nikolco Iliev – mayor of Kocani, Isen Shabani of Vrapciste, Albon Xhemaili of Bogovinje, Petre Shilegov of the City of Skopje, Arben Taravari of Gostivar, Konstantin Georgieski of Ohrid, Gerasim Konzulov of Radovish, Nikola Andonov of Novo Selo and Aleksandar Naumoski of Gjorce Petrov.
BISNESSMEN, LAWYERS AND DOCTORS – RICH MUNICIPAL FATHERS
According to the State Commission for Prevention of Corruption and Crime, the mayors’ ownership structure is similar to that of senior officials. Cars, tractors, motorcycles, gold jewelry, watches, art paintings, real estate and non-precise property, as well as bank accounts, stakes and loans have been reported.
The most valuable property of the current mayors has been reported by Mitko Jancev. The thirty-eight-year-old mayor of Kavadarci owns property worth nearly 11 million Euros. The total real estate in Kavadarci, Vatasa, Skopje and Ohrid owned by Jancev includes 240,770 m2 and is worth 1,865,124 Euros. His fleet consists of a BMW X Series, two Aprilia motorcycles and five tractors, and his wife owns a 2013 Land Rover Evoque.
In 2017 SCOOP wrote about the mayors’ properties. First on the list was the then mayor of Kocani, Ratko Dimitrovski from VMRO-DPMNE with a property of 3,511,283 Euros. Nikolco Ilijev now runs the municipality as a party candidate nominated by the SDSM-led coalition. He currently ranks second with a property of 7,475,131 Euros. Most of the property consists of foreign currency deposits owned by Ilijev, his wife and children. They own a holiday home in Greece, but also real estate in Kocani, Polaki and Jastrebnik.
The former director of the State Market Inspectorate, Isen Shabani, who was elected mayor of Vrapciste in 2017, weighs 3,299,988 denars. Shabani reported to the SCPC a common real estate property in Gradec, Tetovo and Gostivar, which is the most numerous of the items on his declaration of assets. He owns two Mercedes and Audi cars, as well as two foreign exchange savings books with 20,000 Swiss francs or 50,000 Euros.
Fourth on the list with property worth 1,367,683 Euros is the physician Albon Xhemaili who runs the municipality of Bogovinje. His property does not have many items unlike the previous mayors, but still reaches a million. Characteristic of Xhemaili is that he reported his parents’ property in Bogovinje and Tirana – Albania, as well as his wife’s PHI Pharmacy “Elarda”. On the other hand, he reported only two motor vehicles on his behalf.
Petre Shilegov, former lawyer and now mayor of the capital, owns property worth 1,332,115 Euros. The Shilegov family own gold jewelry and watches worth around 130,000 Euros, as well as paintings of close to 50,000 Euros. In addition to real estate in Skopje that has four apartments and one house, they also own a house in Mavrovo of 55,000 Euros. Shilegov also receives a monthly fee of around 800 Euros for consulting services.
Former Minister of Health, incumbent mayor of Gostivar Arben Taravari owns property worth 1,007,176 Euros. He drives a Volvo XC worth nearly 50,000 Euros and has a denar deposit of nearly 11,000 Euros. His wife also has a deposit of 31,000 Euros and drives a Mercedes A class worth 1,800 Euros, but also owns an apartment in Skopje, as well as gold jewelry worth close to 22,000 Euros. Together they own paintings by Macedonian authors worth nearly 4,000 Euros. The rest of the property is owned by his parents and consists of two houses, a construction land, three business premises and a courtyard.
Internal medicine specialist and current mayor of Ohrid, Konstantin Georgievski, who took office in May 2019, reported a property worth 1,001,463 Euros. Georgievski drives Opel Signum, owns part of a house, a pasture and business premises in Ohrid. He holds deposits worth around 17,000 Euros, a credit card of 800 Euros and has debts of a total of 67 thousand Euros.
Gerasim Konzulov, a Macedonian politician from SDSM, the current mayor of Radovis, owns property of 949,841 Euros. His family owns three companies, Gold Transportation Dooel, Galactic Dooel and Consul Trans Dooel. In addition to the real estate worth 598,622, in his declaration of assets there is an Opel Antara and BMW X5 as well as company property covering 5 trucks, dumpers and a car.
The Mayor of Novo Selo, Nikola Andonov, owns property worth 821,673 Euros. Andonov has not listed the value for 16 of 35 items in his declaration of assets. The value of the real estate of 62.123 m2 in Skopje, Novo Selo and Bosilovo is under question. Only the value of the house and agricultural land in Kolezino, worth 86 thousand Euros, is listed. The remaining 735,000 Euros come from his savings books, dividends and shares as well as from the said “Business” worth 605 thousand Euros.
The tenth richest mayor is Aleksandar Naumoski, the first man of the municipality of Gjorce Petrov. Naumoski owns property worth 726,341 Euros. He owns a house in Kicevo and two motorcycles, Motorcycle Aprilia and BMW X5 and a loan of 10,000 Euros. His wife has a deposit of 10,000 Euros and a loan of 11,000 Euros. Together they own art and collectibles worth 3,000 Euros. The other real estate listed on Naumoski’s declaration of assets belongs to his parents and consists of: a house, two flats, a land, a forest and an agricultural land. They also own a Renault Megan car worth around 2,000 Euros.
FOUR MAYORS RICHER AFTER THE LOCAL ELECTIONS
Within four of the current mayors serving a second term an increase in the value of their property has been noticed, compared to data released by SCOOP in 2017, when the last local elections were held.
|Municipality||Mayor||2017 property value||2019 property value|
|Kichevo||Fatmir Dehari||301.205 Euros||302.489 Euros|
|Tearce||Isen Asani||134.756 Euros||194.331 Euros|
|Centar Zhupa||Arijan Ibraimi||96.854 Euros||97.687 Euros|
|Ilinden||Zhika Stojanovski||93.702 Euros||99.555 Euros|
Meanwhile, seven mayors have reduced property values.
|Municipality||Mayor||2017 property value||2019 property value|
|Brvenica||Enver Pajaziti||1.464.341 Euros||126.459 Euros|
|Plasnica||Ismail Jahoski||794.614 Euros||431.274 Euros|
|Chucher Sandevo||Jovan Pejkovski||518.699 Euros||333.333 Euros|
|Tetovo||Teuta Arifi||270.237 Euros||245.725 Euros|
|Zrnovci||Blazho Stankov||213.496 Euros||168.065 Euros|
|Petrovec||Borche Mitevski||168.130 Euros||125.203 Euros|
|Sopishte||Stevche Trpkovski||134.793 Euros||119.052 Euros|