President Thaci marking the end of the school year with pupils of Buroje, Skenderaj, the President's hometown. | Photo courtesy of the President's Office.

President Thaci under fire for ‘campaigning’

After a short visit to a primary school in Skenderaj, President Thaci was accused of violating the Kosovo Constitution and campaigning for his former party, PDK.

After current President Hashim Thaci visited a primary school in Skenderaj to mark the end of the school year, the Democratic League of Kosovo, LDK, reacted, asserting his visit could violate Articles 83 and 88 of the Kosovo Constitution.

LDK claimed that the visit was made to assist the political campaigning of the so-called ‘midnight coalition’ between the Democratic Party of Kosovo, PDK, the Alliance for the Future of Kosovo, AAK, and the Initiative for Kosovo.

“Thaci touring to different schools to allegedly visit students and teachers is an effort to help ‘the midnight coalition,’ for which he played an important role in creating,” the LDK press release says.

In the press release, they called on Thaci not to violate the Constitution and warned that they would turn to the Constitutional Court.

“In order to not completely degrade this institution, we request from Hashim Thaci, the President of Kosovo, to stop his pre-election tour to Kosovo schools. We are making this request in order to avoid a constitutional violation, which we would have to then address,” the party states.

Campaigning for the June 11 snap elections will officially commence on May 30.

According to the LDK, Thaci’s claim that his goal was to visit students and teachers is a farce.

“Teachers need to focus on successfully finalizing the school year more than on his campaign in support of ‘the midnight coalition.’ We call on our political opponents, including Thaci, who is aligned with the midnight coalition, not to abuse citizen taxes for electoral purposes,” the press release concludes.

Arben Gashi, an MP candidate running under LDK, said that Thaci’s school visit was unreasonable.

“It is a violation of law and the Constitution. President Thaci should not get involved in political activities. In this delicate situation, it is unreasonable to make these visits. I think that his behavior is a mistake,” Gashi said.

Aida Derguti, an MP running as part of Vetevendosje, said that her party will be following what President Thaci says to groups he meets with.

“If Thaci makes a step such as this at the end of the school year during election season, which is clearly related to the coalition, it is very important to see what he is saying to those people,” Derguti said, adding that if he campaigns, the party will raise the issue at the Constitutional Court.

“If we see any indication or fact that he is carrying out a political campaign, we will undoubtedly take it to the Constitutional Court,” Derguti said.

26/05/2017 - 14:23

26 May 2017 - 14:23

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