Investigative journalism is a struggle between the journalist and the institutions

The winner for EU Investigative Journalism Award in Macedonia for year 2016 is Aleksandar Dimitrievski for his series of investigative stories of the subsidies for crop and livestock production, published at the Internet page “Prizma”. 
Through an online database and a series of articles, the stories provide data on the allocation of about 3% of the state budget on the basis of subsidies for crop and livestock production. The articles also reveal the manner in which subsidies were allocated, analyze potential links among beneficiaries of subsidies, as well as the questionable ownership of certain companies receiving subsidies.
“The database is a kind of a struggle between the journalist and the institutions, because after a year and a half, we finally had a product that in itself contains information from public institutions only, information that should be accessible, but not in our case. Yet, we managed to make this information available to the public” Dimitrievski stressed.
The award for this story was a recognition of the excellent mix of investigative journalism and demonstrated commitment to contribute to the fight against corruption in the society. The story is a reminder of the essential features of investigative journalism: throwing light on injustice that otherwise would not be sufficiently known to the public, analysing the topic in a systematic and comprehensive manner, while applying highest standards of journalism.
Dimitrievski's message to colleagues was that they should never give up the search for information that are to be provided by the institutions: “I fully understand, and perhaps this example shows best, that often fear exists that because of the prolonged waiting and the extensive process, the story will lose its relevance and by the time we get to the end, we will not have anything. I would like to have this story serve as an example that persistence pays off always, and I would like to remind you that the other party actually always hopes that you will quit.”  
The second prize was awarded to Zoran Jovanoski for the story "Ashes of death", published in the show "360 degrees" on "Alsat - M" television, focusing on an environmental catastrophe which is associated with the phenomenon of dramatically increased mortality rate among citizens in the region of Kicevo, due to the operation of the thermal power plant Oslomej and the improper treatment of the ashes from coal combustion.
Slavica Filipovska won the award for a "best investigative story of a young journalist" for her story "Bulgarian passport for a 'clean' Macedonia', published in the show "360 degrees" on "Alsat - M" Television. In an authentic and original way the story reveals how the citizens in an effort to rapidly enter EU member-countries find their way through the procedure to get a passport for Bulgarian citizenship.