The President of the Republic Ilir Meta went beyond his constitutional powers by canceling the 30 June 2019 local elections and indicating others, but they are not acts of such gravity as to justify impeachment.
It is this - as reported by the Albanian media - the position of the Venice Commission which, through a text in circulation that shows the word "Draft Opinion" at the top and date 29 September, stated that the President of the Republic does not have the power to cancel the elections.
"The President went beyond his constitutional competences by canceling and postponing the elections, without having such a competence in the Constitution. Local elections can be canceled only in emergency situations, but even in that case one must act in accordance with the constitutional provisions or on the basis of ad hoc legal solutions (such as temporary regulations). "- reads in the document.
The Commission also said that the boycott by the opposition cannot stop the elections because "otherwise, these parties would get the opportunity and the advantage of hindering any electoral process"
What could happen now
Last 15 September , Ilir Meta himself had stated that he would resign in the hypothesis that the Venice Commission considered his actions anti-constitutional.
"Absolutely. If the Venice Commission considers that I have violated the constitution, I will resign. In the past I resigned as prime minister for much less.
It is impossible to think of a scenario in which the Commission states that I have violated the constitution and I continue to be president. Ever and never. Although in the past the Constitutional Court stated that parliamentary or governmental laws were anti-constitutional and nothing happened "- the words of president Meta the 15 September.
There is much public expectation for what will be the very first words of reaction from the Albanian head of state. In any case, the Venice Commission has specified that the decision of its possible removal from office is the responsibility of the first parliament and then of the Constitutional Court, which will evaluate the extent of the violation and whether this can justify the removal from office.
Last 8 June, Ilir Meta had canceled the June 30 elections without offering reasons, which were explained before the 9 September parliamentary inquiry commission:
"The immediate cancellation without consulting any political party of the date of the 30 June came after information arrived from important security institutions, according to which in the anti-government protest of the 8 June would have set fire to the parliament."- had stated Ilir Meta stating that the documents with this information could be made available to members of the parliamentary committee.
There have been many reactions from the Socialist Party front, which underline how the President has not respected the Constitution and therefore it is fully justified to prosecute. No comment from the Presidency of the Republic, pending an official text.
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