Prosecutor Gashi Boycots Vetting Hearing Claiming KPK Bias & Conflict of Interest

In a public statement released today, Prosecutor Rovena Gashi claims that the Independent Qualification Commission (KPK) judicial body, consisting of Genta Tafa, Lulzim Hamitaj, and Pamela Qirko, did not allow her a real and effective participation in her vetting hearing, which was supposed to take place today.

Gashi opposed the judicial body of her vetting five times as at least one commissioner had a conflict of interest. However, KPK did not take her demands into consideration until at the end of the administrative investigation. According to the judicial body, these demands are mere attempts to delay the vetting process. As a result, Gashi refused to take part in the hearing.

The KPK judicial body, via an email dated July 19, 2018, stated that the prosecutor’s request will be taken into account by the commission during her assessment.

Earlier this month, the Special Appeals Chamber (KPA) ruled that it had no competence over the suspension of Gashi by Temporary General Prosecutor Arta Marku as a result of an investigation by the Durrës Prosecution Office after confidential vetting documents from Gashi’s file had been leaked to a news outlet owned by a former MP investigated by Gashi.

By not allowing the prosecutor to defend herself, and denying her a normal vetting procedure, the KPK hearing will consist of only the accusations of the judicial body, with Gashi being prevented from presenting any evidence to exculpate herself or oppose the commission’s findings.

In a 27-page analytical report, Rovena Gashi lists KPK’s violations, summed up below:

  • The reassessment subject, prosecutor Rovena Gashi, was not guaranteed a vetting process with an independent and unbiased judicial body.
  • Gashi’s reassessment procedure was biased, and its results were predetermined.
  • The judicial body of Gashi’s reassessment process failed to guarantee the subject of its independence, impartiality, and accountability.
  • From November 11, 2017, to March 15, 2018, the judicial body of Gashi’s reassessment process contained, in the legally decisive role of Relator, commissioner Suela Zhegu, who has a clear conflict of interest when it comes to prosecutor Gashi.
  • The administrative investigation conducted by this body into the life and activities of Rovena Gashi is invalid.
  • KPK rejected all 38 evidence pieces it requested from the assessment subject, Rovena Gashi.
  • KPK asked Gashi for explanations, unaccompanied by evidence, regarding the preemptive results of the administrative investigation, that was launched and conducted exclusively by this organ.

Prosecutor Gashi has turned to the European Court of Human Rights in search of a fair process.