President Stevo Pendarovski visited тoday in Tetovo the burned modular hospital intended for treatment of Covid-19 patients, where 14 people died in last night fire.
President Pendarovski was informed about the initial findings related to the tragic event.
“I came here to express solidarity with the citizens of Tetovo and mostly with those who lost their loved ones and to talk on the spot with the authorities. The competent public prosecutor informed me that in one to two hours they will formally complete the inspection which is led for already two days and will come out with their report as soon as possible. The procedure is: they give orders to other competent institutions, such as autopsy order and orders to the Ministry of Interior. The prosecutor told me that he issued very short deadlines, probably five days for each institution to respond within its jurisdiction. After receiving the separate reports, he will come up with his own summary report which will reveal the cause of the fire and whether there is any human error therein”, President Pendarovski said.
“At this stage, I assume you know about the latest decision of the Government of the Republic of North Macedonia to declare three days of mourning throughout the country and to call on foreign expertise to help with such specific events and specific fires. From what I heard from the person in charge in the fire brigade, the whole building burned down in just a few minutes, which is in itself the basis for analysis. However, that is the job of the competent institutions. We have enough professional staff in all these institutions that are involved in this, let me call it, multi-layered investigation. I have no doubt that in a short time we will know the real reason”, President Pendarovski said.
“What I want to say publicly – up to now, because there were such speculations, this morning I talked to the President of Slovenia, Pahor, for example, who asked me the same thing, there are various speculations that it was arson, that it is linked with the “30 Years of Independence”, that there are some conspiracies for that – so far there is no indication that this was done deliberately, in order to achieve some other, political goal. But, I say, it is at this moment, and of course the competent public prosecutor will tell you today or in the coming days”, President Pendarovski said.
Asked by reporters if he would ask anyone to resign, President Pendarovski stressed that he always insists on responsibility, political or moral, and said that the findings of the investigation must be awaited. The clarification of such cases, according to President Pendarovski, is a test through which we should confirm whether we really deserve the independence of the state.
In front of the modular hospital in Tetovo, President Pendarovski talked about the tragic event with the Chief of the General Staff of the Army, Lieutenant General Vasko Gjurcinovski, Lieutenant Colonel Izeir Ejupi, Commander of the 3rd Infantry Battalion, with the Director of the Hospital, Florim Besimi and the Commander of the Fire Fighting Unit, Uka Aliti, and was personally informed about last night’s event.