Official candidate against Edi Rama for the post of Prime Minister and head of the SP

Official candidate against Edi Rama for the post of Prime Minister and head of the SP

Tirana, 29 January 2016/Independent Balkan News Agency

In Albania the fight inside of the Socialist Party which governs the country with the former right wing ally, Ilir Meta, has intensified.

Ben Blushi, a socialist MP, writer and prominent journalist, has announced his candidacy for the Socialist Party leadership.

Former minister of Local Government in the cabinet of Fatos Nano, says that he will come out with his own platform and adds that his battle is a battle of principles. Blushi has publicly admitted that he is aiming for the posts that Edi Rama currently holds.

Under the SP bylaws, the chairman automatically becomes PM if this political force governs the country.

The elections are expected to be held in Tirana on 19 March in the congress summoned by the SP. Ben Blushi says that he demands honest elections, by accusing Rama of starting his manipulations of the socialist membership to secure the necessary votes in congress.

Blushi expresses his conviction that if he was leader of SP, he would lead it better than Edi Rama.

“Political parties give strength to the power, if they are not democratic, then there cannot be democracy. In May, Merkel had won the general elections and immediately after them, she held elections within her party. Thatcher was removed by her party and not the electors; Tony Blair was removed by his own party. The party removes you if you don’t offer guarantees that the elections will be won”, Blushi said.

The socialist MP said that the SP has lost its identity and is not governing as a left. “All the decisions that have been recently taken in parliament are entirely personal. All of them are concessions. Today, the SP belongs neither to the left wing, nor to the right wing, it’s confused. In three years, poverty has grown and we are not doing everything we need to do for the poor. But how can we help the poor when the party is filled with either bandits or rich people? How is it possible that our parliamentary group has the ten richest people in Albania? Why do they join a left wing party?”, Blushi said.

But what would be Blushi’s decision in relation to the governing coalition with Meta if he were elected leader of the SP?

“This coalition and Edi Rama are responsible for not finding the necessary equilibrium. The coalition is generating power, but not reforms. I shall change this coalition and make it more functional”, Blushi said, not clarifying if this change implies Meta’s departure.

Blushi is not in favor a rotation of power between the SP and DP, but he talks about another kind of rotation. According to him, this would have a lower cost for Albanians. “I’m not saying that we should go to early elections. I believe that that today there’s a smaller cost for the dignity, life and a smaller political cost for the Albanian people if power changes within the SP rather than be transferred from the SP to the DP. I will run within the SP to better govern Albanians”, he said.

The declarations issued by the socialist MP are not lighting in the blue sky. Even before, he has been very active and critical, starting in 2009 when the SP lost the elections against Berisha. At that time, Blushi demanded Rama to resign based on the statute.

In spite of the frequent critical appearances that Blushi has made on the media, Rama has seldom chosen to retort, by just using the phrase: “Let the owls speak, we are giving rebirth to Albania”. /ibna/