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Edi Rama unexpected signals to leave the government, the prime minister gives up his stay in power until 2030, who cut him off?
Written by Elmas Bogdani 18 Nëntor 2023
Prime Minister Edi Rama has recently given unexpected signals that he may withdraw from politics in the 2025 elections. Although some time ago he was emphasizing and talking about another mandate, i.e. he would end his government in 2029, it seems like there is a change of course. The Prime Minister used to meet people and give predictions about his life expectancy in power, saying bluntly that he will be in charge of the country for at least the next 7 years. We also recall that in the last elections of 2021, Rama revealed for the first time the vision for governance in Albania. He appeared confident in the victory of the Socialist Party not only in this election but also for another 10 years. "We don't have 8 years in the government yet, because we started at the beginning of September 2013. Our days, weeks and years have been filled with work and when it's 8 we will have done more work. Our program is publicly known.
We have set the pillars, and we continue to work. We will publish a platform with a work program. It will be a working vision for Albania until 2030. To be clear, the SP will be in power until 2030," Rama said in 2021. But apparently the prime minister has given up on staying in power until 2030. The reaction of Rama's deadline for early retirement from politics was November 13. "We are the only country in our neighborhood in the Balkans that has zero taxes for small business and where the government is the strategic ally of every person who opens the door of a small business. Because it does not require any tax or VAT. The tax will be zero by 2029, I am or I am not. If it's not me, the only reason that can bring me back here to tell you "let's get up and overthrow these (SP) is that they are affecting the small business tax", said Rama.
Rama's imminent departure
Also, a few weeks ago he gave messages that his life in politics will not be long. For the first time, the head of the government has also revealed that he has not yet made the decision whether he will seek a fourth term as Prime Minister of Albania. "I never thought about the next mandate, I only think about what I have to do in the current mandate. I don't make these decisions in advance, because life has taught me, sometimes worse and sometimes graciously, that it is better to have a vision and a destination, but to plan and work step by step. You never know with these things going on. But even without something happening, he still doesn't know," said Rama in the podcast created by himself. Also at the beginning of May this year, Rama gave signals that his departure will be very close, as the head of the government said that the campaign for the May 14 elections was not his preparation for a fourth term.
Who cut him off?
Why this sudden change of course of Rama? Could the prime minister resign as prime minister? His most important collaborators for years in the Socialist Party are falling one by one into cells. Rama is the only prime minister who leads the country with two governments. One inside the prison and the other in institutions. In recent weeks, SPAK has brought well-known names from SP to the cells. Even the affair of the incinerators that sank his ally Arben Ahmetaj, one of the highest officials among the socialists, endangers his name. Not only that, the McGonigal file that bears his name continues to be investigated. The US does not condone interference in its affairs, moreover, an FBI official was bribed. Although the prime minister distanced himself, the file is very voluminous and there are many unresolved issues. Moreover, during his visit to the US, Congress has requested the opening of the file. Also in SPAK, many socialist ministers have files under investigation.
As we have seen these times, the new justice in the patronage of the Americans does not ask for names. Frida Krifca, Damian Gjiknuri, Ilir Beqaj, Olta Xhaçka, Ogerta Manastirliu, Niko Peleshi or Belinda Balluku are in trouble with justice. Files of abuses with EU funds, tenders, corruption in health, incinerators, are boiling in SPAK. It is a matter of days or weeks for the Special Prosecutor's Office to wait for the arrest warrants. Not only that, but Rama is under the American red circle for cooperation with "non gratats". The latest issue of the scandal with the oligarchs who finance Sali Berisha and his family members with the projects signed by the government has increased the American tsunami against Rama.
The USA has imposed a total "blockade" on the Prime Minister. A few weeks ago, when Rama led the Security Council at the UN, nobody ignored him. Sheti's American secretary, Antony Blinken, didn't even look at him or try to reach out. Unlike Rama, Bajram Begaj, but also Vjosa Osmani met with President Biden, DASH official Gabriel Escobar and Deputy. The President of the European Commission, Josep Borrell or the President of Switzerland. It seems as if the Americans boycotted the "global leader". If Rama does not have American support, his dream of governing until 2030 is cut in half. It remains to be seen what will happen in the following weeks, but developments show that a big "earthquake" is expected in Albanian politics.