Prime Minister Edi Rama has replaced Minister of Education Besa Shahini on the first day of school in Albania. She will be replaced by Socialist Party MP Evis Kushi.
Shahini, who became minister less than two years ago, in December 2018, had announced her early departure before, citing personal issues.
Shahini and Kushi were welcomed at prime minister’s office today.
In a short social media message, Rama thanked Shahini and wished her well in her family life in Kosovo.
On Monday, Shahini, a Kosovo Albanian, explained her experience in a farewell message on Facebook.
She said she was a civil society activist in Kosovo, who illustrated successful education policies with the Rama government’ example, when she received a call from Albania to work with Rama.
Shahini noted that she further improved the Albanian educational system during this time, travelled a lot and got to know the country better. She stressed how impressed she was by the Albanians’ solidarity during the November 2019 earthquake and the beginnings of coronavirus pandemics.
The former minister further explained that Rama’s choice to make her a minister, as well has her experience with his government, show that he is deeply engaged to bring all Albanians closer.
She said she had asked Rama to leave before the start of 2021 electoral campaign, and be with her family in Kosovo.
Shahini replied to criticism of her education policies by focusing on the alleged “racist tactics” employed by the Albanian opposition to attack her “from the first day” over her Kosovo accent and dialect. She claimed the opposition has alleged that “Kosovo Albanians are less intelligent and wise” than those of Albania.
She vowed she will further be engaged in politics as a leftist and feminist.
Evis Kushi has been a Socialist MP since 2013, and a lecturer since 1999.