A death accident occurred before the weekend in Tirana has turned into a topic of the day and sparked political accusations.
The accident involving the main MP of PJIU (Party for Justice, Integration and Unity), a political force which has based its strategy in what it considers as unrealized rights of the Cham community.
Aqif Rakipi, known as a businessman in Peqin (central Albania), was elected several weeks ago for a second term as MP.
On Thursday evening, while he was driving his car and entering the capital, Tirana, Rakipi MP hit and caused the death of the 53 year old Seit Skorra, a merchant, resident in the capital.
The MP didn’t stop, but left the scene, by not offering any assistance to the victim of the accident.
Several minutes later, he appeared at the police station.
Initially, police partially redacted the report on the event. Afterwards, it admitted that the MP had fled the scene. What was noticed in the statements issued by police and prosecution was the fact that extra care was taken in order not to blame the MP for the accident, but the pedestrian.
Neither police nor the prosecution commented the fact that the MP left the scene. They didn’t even declare if this act of leaving the scene affected the investigation of the fatal accident.
The investigation also reveals another fact. It was conducted without the presence of the prosecutor. Police said that it could not reach the prosecutor.
The death of the merchant was followed by the reaction of the family members. Cousins of the victim, eyewitnesses, declared that Aqif Rakipi MP had crashed the victim, Seit, to death and had immediately left the scene. They say that Rakipi left without stopping, as if he wanted to hide something.
Eyewitnesses of the accident, two cousins of the victim, claim that they have seen the entire scene.
“We saw everything, because we were there. We were going to the market. He did not hit Seit, but massacred him with his car and didn’t even bother to stop. He even sped up and left the scene”, eyewitnesses say.
Meanwhile, a family member of the victim goes even further by claiming that the MP may have left to conceal something.
“Police say that he was not drunk, but I am convinced he was. However, his act of fleeing the scene in such way is not only linked to this. He certainly wanted to hide something. I don’t think he left to turn himself in to the police. These are just excuses”, he says.
For the Democratic Party, the main opposition force, the testimony of the cousins is shocking and it shows that this is a criminal event.
The DP says that the fact that the MP left the scene is criminal. Meanwhile, it also addresses several questions: “What was Rama’s friend hiding? Was he intoxicated by alcohol or other substances? What did Rama’s friend have in his car? What did he not want police to find inside of it?”
Another question that was addressed in social networks and by the opposition was: “Why did an MP, a person who is elected by the people, not offer the first aid, but fled the scene immediately after hitting someone?”
The opposition also comments the declaration issued by police stating that the pedestrian was responsible: “The fact that police and law enforcement agencies rushed to declare the victim responsible just because the MP is Edi Rama’s friend, is outrageous”.
Under these circumstances, the DP “calls on a full investigation of the circumstances and for the MP to be held fully responsible for his act”. This party also warns “any person who is favoring Rama’s friend at the detriment of the victim, that whoever breaks the law will be held accountable”.
PJIU has also reacted about this event by attacking the DP.
“The DP wants to turn a tragic accident into a political debate. PJIU requests from the Prosecution and Police not to be political affected in investigating this tragic event”, PJIU says in its statement.
Meanwhile, Rakipi MP was released a few hours after he turned himself in. Prosecution said that it was impossible for the MP to maneuver his car and avoid hitting the pedestrian at the moment of the accident. As far as the accident is concerned, Rakipi says that the only thing that he feels sorry about is the lost life, while he’s not worried about the political accusations being made against him. “I don’t want to comment them. I’m very sad about what happened”, Rakipi said.
The MP says that he wasn’t driving fast and adds that: “There are some things in life that do not depend on our will”.
There have also been previous cases when MPs, ministers, other senior officials and even prime ministers have been involved in road accidents. The majority of these accidents have ended up with the death of the pedestrians. In all cases, the officials have been released and in some cases, there have been suspicions that cases may have been covered up and officials involved in these cases have not been prosecuted. /balkaneu.com/