Basha: No Peace between Rama and Me

Basha: No Peace between Rama and Me

Today opposition leader Lulzim Basha held his first speech in front of the new Parliament. Reviewing the results of four years Rama government, he spoke of a failed mandate delivered to organized crime, while predicting the same fate for Prime Minister Edi Rama’s new mandate.

Four years ago you came here and announced 300,000 jobs, free healthcare, order and security, lowering taxes for 97% of Albanians, opening of EU accession negotiations, and other less important things. You come today, exactly 4 years later, at the same place without keeping a single promise, with the hope that time will forgive you. […]

Rama 1 is the first government that didn’t accomplish anything in the field of European integration. […]

Rama 1 is the first government in the history of Albania that didn’t bring any new foreign investment. Absolutely nothing. Instead of policies to attract foreign investments, Rama 1 made it a priority to promote the Prime Minister’s pictures in Hong Kong, Singapore, China, Turkey, Germany, Austria, and the US.

Rama 1 is the government that has taken on the largest public debt in the history of the transition of Albania: more than $2.5 billion debt. Without counting the hidden debt in the form of concession of about half a billion dollar extra. […]

It is the first government in the history of Albania that has been accused of being captured by organized crime. Even foreign countries set Rama 1 and ultimatum to remove its Minister of Interior directly linked with drug circles. The accomplishments of Rama 1 are in fact historical: The US State Department and Interpol officially declared Albania a main country for cannabis cultivation and trafficking in Europe, major transition country for heroin from Asia to Europe, and the US State Department officially put Albania on the blacklist of money laundering countries. […]

It is a great scandal that his program does not include anything related to the EU integration process. […] There is an important reason for Rama’s abandonment of European integration: he has no interest in European integration because that means that he will have to fulfill a series of conditions that have to do with good governance and democracy, especially to fight crime, drugs, and corruption. And he cannot do such a thing. […]

In spite of the pre-electoral agreement between Basha and Rama, and the fact that several PD ministers until recently were part of Rama’s government, Basha stated that there is “no olive branch” between them, and that to compete with the opposition, Rama would have to first get rid of several of his political allies:

To become my competitor is very difficult for you, maybe even impossible, because you’ll have to become something you’re not. To believe behind crime and embrace values.

You need to start with firing Gramoz Ruçi as Speaker of Parliament not only to remove crime from politics, but also to save the discredited image of the country.

You need to arrest the brother of [Minister of Interior Affairs] Fatmir Xhafaj and hand him over to Interpol, who is looking for him for international drug trade.

You need to fire Fatmir Xhafaj as a person connected to crime.

You need to arrest all police functionaries who have supported drugs so far, headed by their captain, [former Minister of Interior Affairs Saimir] Tahiri.

Basha also argued for electoral reform, a project which according to the McAllister+ agreement of May both the majority and opposition will work on together. He promised to propose a number of measures to change the “rotten system.”






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