Published on : 09 September 2017

With journalists after the vote for the new Speaker of the Assembly

Prime Minister Edi Rama answers the media after the plenary session where the new Speaker of the Assembly was elected:
It is important that today we started with the new direction of the Assembly. Our ambition is to give the Assembly its dignity back, after it was trampled for four years during which a permanent chaos reigned and the constitution consensually approved was permanently violated. It is important that we bring in the Assembly a new spirit, a spirit of cooperation, interaction, of course within the normal logic of opposite positions because in the end we are here to face opposite visions, programs, ideas and approaches. It is important that we give the Albanians a positive example of our efforts for them and with them, and spare them the weekly show of a totally ugly banality, which is completely unworthy of the trust they have placed in us by voting us to be in the hall of this Assembly.
Mr Rama, what do you expect from the MPs, given today’s stance of the opposition and the fact that the SMI group did not participate in the vote of the Speaker of the Assembly, while the other opposition leaked votes? 
I would understand today's attitude of our until-yesterday allies because they do not want to face a significant leak of votes, and I believe it is a pragmatic choice not to have a leak of votes. In the end, it doesn’t matter how many more or fewer votes. It is important here that we do first of all what people have brought us here for, and this is that everyone do their job. Our job is to lead and work at best to address the many things that the Albanians want to address. The task of the opposition is to deal with us, to criticise us, hit and accuse us, but it should give an option. It is their choice. I’m not here to teach the opposition or to tell the opposition what it should do. We’re here to do our job. On Monday we will present the new cabinet and the program. I thank the President of the Republic for his prompt reaction, making the way to Monday's session easy from the procedural point of view. Then, of course, we will listen carefully to the opposition's natural controversy, we will try to react to what can be rational and in accordance with our program, and we will continue to hope that the opposition will be in this hall a real challenge for us, rather than a permanent expression of the gap in terms of ideas, of the program, of the leadership as it has been in the past four years.
Mr Rama, is there already a new relationship between you and Ilir Meta?
For me personally the relationship has always been the same, and what matters is not my relationship with Ilir Meta because in the individual aspect, this does not interest anyone, but it is my relationship as Prime Minister with Ilir Meta as President of the Republic. In this regard, I have said before, even when the situation did not seem that promising, because once the high waves of the campaign have passed, the experience and the recovery of tranquillity after losing the election would triumph over the inertia of a moment that was unfortunate for Ilir.
Mr Rama, you were not in the Presidency today to receive the decree, as you were in 2013 when you were mandated as Prime Minister. 
Everything is done according to a determined order, and I have respected the order by coming here to follow the process for the election of the Speaker of Parliament. And don’t worry for I will be in the Presidency, not just for the new government, but also whenever it is necessary to communicate with the President of the Republic about issues of national interest or of the common interests of the Albanians.
Mr Rama, do you think you could revive the May 18 agreement with the opposition, as it has been said that in the new legislature the constitutional reform and electoral reform will be discussed again?
First of all, I have to see and understand if the deal is alive or has died. I hope it is alive. To be honest, today the position of the Democratic Party has been super-correct, institutional. I would say it's a positive sign. How it will continue afterwards, it remains to be seen, without ever having the illusion that there will be political peace under the fragile olive seedling that was planted on May 18th. But hoping that we will nourish that seedling for the benefit of Albania and of the Albanians with regard to all aspects of their common interests. So let's be clear that if the opposition and namely the PD are harsh, that does not mean that the deal is dead. If the principles of that agreement are violated, this is another matter. But that remains to be seen. I personally am neither optimistic nor pessimistic. I have a lot of curiosity to see the opposition’s approach in doing its job as opposition in a new 4-year term, after a not positive election outcome for them.
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