Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic tried to demean an N1 reporter, sarcastically replying to a question about the state of the country’s food reserves and accusing N1 of having bad intentions towards him.
Vucic took media crews on a visit to a warehouse used to store rice and beans. The N1 reporter asked if there was anything in the warehouse that was produced in Serbia and Vucic apologized sarcastically for there not being enough rice paddies in the country. “We apologize for not having enough rice paddies but we want our people to be able to eat enough rice. Sorry that we are not in China, we don’t have rice paddies, we never had enough nor will we but it takes more than just the desire to show that we are not successful enough, sometimes it takes a little fairness and a little knowledge. So we apologize for that… We apologize for providing for our citizens, enough rice even though Serbia is not a rice country. There is enough and we imported it,” Vucic said.
He accused United Group media outlets of not being interested in what he has to say. “I’m sorry that your three media – N1, Nova S and AdriaNews – whatever they are called, never pay attention to what I say because you are interested in hearing your voice and your questions and don’t hear what I say. This is not just a food warehouse. We took you down there and showed you where we have dams to prevent flooding,” he said.
The N1 reporter replied: “We were waiting for you here, we didn’t know what you were going to show down there. There is no need to insult journalists, saying that we don’t know something or that we expect too much. I asked you politely if there is anything there from our country?
Vucic replied: “Not one word of what I said insulted you, except that I said that you do not want to follow me and that you don’t know certain things… That is why I think it’s important that you learn that Serbia is not a land of rice and it would be good if you learned that”.
N1: “No one said that Serbia is a rice producer”.
Vucic: “The fact that you think you can annoy me by being impolite is no good. We have so many other problems… We never had enough beans, we imported from Kazakhstan and China and North Macedonia. You can’t have everything”.
N1: “Why can’t you just say that?”
Vucic: “The problem is that you have bad intentions, besides not knowing. If my words are insulting to you I am proud of the fact that a great dictator insulted you by telling you that you don’t know something”.