As Old Kingdom Crambles, New Hopes Arise in Albania


On Sunday the Albanian people hurried to get to the polls and cast their vote. Tired from poverty and corruption that has grabbed every aspect of social and political life, in the verge of despair; we woke up from a long apathy and ran to the polls. The kingdom crumbled, so was the myth created in the last 8 years during the Democratic Party ruling that politicians in power are the real kings; they can abuse public funds, get away with tragedies like Gerdeci, 21 of January, buy or manipulate the votes publicly and yet be there to run for a third term.

Inside the bunker

At the king’s heaven the strong is immune to law even without immunity, holding its citizen’s hostage in any possible sense. You are unemployed and need a crappy job in public sector to survive then pay to get it, you are sick, insured but no able to bribe the doctors yet die slowly from neglect in some lost public hospital corner, you are the owner of the house or land still be without an ownership certificate, you drive in the newly build Elbasan road with taxpayers money yet watch to get home alive from the massive stone falling due to prior opening on the highway for electoral publicity. In a society run by the rules of the jungle where you have to be the lion or in the circle of lions, where the anti-values are served as values, where public servants are brought out to cheer for the party in power in exchange to holding a job in public sector, where money buys everything, well almost everything.

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One rightfully would ask why did it take so long to people to react? How comes that the bubble didn’t burst triggered by some youthful riots? Why this apathy has held us back for so long? I asked myself the same questions. I think partly because people are tired of protesting, fearing of being victims of fighting the government (remember 21 January 2011), drained of being unheard, un-represented, invisible to the government eye. Instead we choose to peacefully say NO to the injustice through our vote.

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This election will be remembered as historic because Albanian citizens regardless many voting obstacles or irregularities ousted the current oppressive leadership. That was a historic NO, not only because the opposition won with a big difference of mandates (latest update 84:56), but because it united Albanians from North to South to break the vicious cycle, and set ourselves free to hope again.

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