With Tahiri, Three More Ministers Gone

After yesterday’s news that Prime Minister Edi Rama had fired Minister of Interior Affairs Saimir Tahiri, today he made the final decision to dismiss a total of four ministers: Minister Tahiri, Minister of Health Ilir Beqaj, Minister of Social Welfare and Youth Blendi Klosi, and Minister of State for Local Government Bledi Çuçi.

Several media have reported that the four ministers have been dismissed to boost the preparations of the Socialist Party (PS) for the elections on June 18. Tahiri is responsible for Tirana, Beqaj for Kukës, Klosi for Berat, and Çuçi for Gjirokastra. Several other ministers, however, responsible for other regions, remain on their posts.

Both Tahiri and Beqaj have been publicly attacked by the opposition, media, and civil society for links with organized crime and corruption, whereas Klosi and Çuçi barely have a public profile.

Meanwhile, the opposition continues to insist in its demand for a caretaker government and the resignation of the Prime Minister. According to PD leader Lulzim Basha, changing “four yes men won’t change anything.”

Prime Minister Rama is expected to explain the substantial changes to his government not in a public press conference, but, through the one-directional and criticism-free medium of his weekly live Facebook video feed at 17:00.