Press statement by Prime Minister Edi Rama after first session of Albanian Parliament’s 10th legislature:
PM Edi Rama: I decided to stop to primarily wish you all successful and fruitful work as servants to the public in this very square, right here in front of the Parliament building. I will personally commit and the Socialist Party will make all the efforts to ensure more energies for the citizens’ interest, their real problems, major common challenges the country faces, their dreams and hopes and less energies for what the politics has unfortunately done over so many years, becoming a domain of the politicians, who have constantly abused for purposes, interests and ambitions that could certainly be natural, but which are never sufficient to stand beyond the people’s interest, goals, ambitions, plight and hopes.
– Basha has obviously has heeded your advice to “kill” his political mentor?
PM Edi Rama: The Socialist Party has won a third term in office to take Albania to a whole new level. The Socialist Party is now on a crucial moment of its journey, because it should profoundly feel its incredible responsibility to take Albania to another new level and how much hard work, energies and efforts this goal would take and how trivial is everything else.
– With Berisha already removed from the Democratic Party’s parliamentary caucus, is now the path clear for you and Mr. Basha to co-govern?
PM Edi Rama: We come to Parliament with our hand extended to opposition. This is what I have already stated since the very beginning, without taking into consideration what was about to happen within DP. Our hand remains extended to cooperate for the country’s best interest, for the citizens’ best interest and in view of the debt we all owe to this people and our children.
– Berisha claims there is a sort of horse-trading between you and Mr. Basha. Is the 2017 pact still in force?
PM Edi Rama: I am very much prepared to live up to my words, by being the first one to set the example of course, and improve each day even in terms of the relation with you. I am pretty aware that totally unintentionally and completely off guard I might have crossed the line and I have done what a heavyweight boxer would never do against a lightweight one by sometimes causing problems for you. I promise I will do my best for fantastic relations between us, and I will always be as calm, smiley, and gentle as I can. If this won’t be the case even for a single moment, then it would be all my fault.
-Do you consider morally fit Lulzim Basha’s move to announce his decision just half hour before announcing it publicly?
PM Edi Rama: Do you realize how big our challenge is, how deep are our problems and how much Albanian citizens rely on the Socialist Party to address their problems and hopes? It is impossible for SP to look down, just like it is the case between us now, because it would lose its perspective and the horizon. We are high and we are very much ahead of the rest and we can’t stop and turn our head back, and look down to see what is going on behind us. We will only look forward and whoever wishes to us and move forward, is welcome.
–Mr. Rama, were you saddened or happy to hear the news about Mr. Berisha’s exclusion from the Democratic Party?
PM Edi Rama: Sadness and joy are very important internal events for a human being to be abused for issues of a political nature, especially when it is about another camp.
– We can then comment on something that really affects people. Most recently there have been suggestions over a rise in bread price. When you took office in 2013, you pledged to cut the basic food prices. What is going to happen? Will the bread price increase?
PM Edi Rama: Thank you very much! These are the kind of questions I would answer for hours long. But there is a problem in this case, because the government has yet to be approved. As soon as the government is approved, I will be here and I will answer this question. Please, anytime I am in front of you, take advantage and make questions concerning people. Take advantage and make questions about the country’s affairs.
The past is not my problem; it is not the Socialist Party’s problem. Whoever represents the past, he would remain in the past. We are the future.
14 October 2021At International Forum on Holocaust Remembrance and Combating Anti-Semitism