In-short | Elections 2017 | Democracy

“We are all the same shit”

By - 27.05.2017

The last seven days of election season.

Kosovo is gearing itself up for election day on June 11, with the campaign being launched on Sunday (May 28). Although not officially underway, election season is already in full swing with ludicrous statements, brutal insults and utter drivel already spewing out of politicians mouths here, there and everywhere. These are some of K2.0’s favourite statements from the past seven days.

Most nostalgic

PDK president Kadri Veseli seemed to be channeling the spirit of Albanian Communist leader Enver Hoxha when he spoke of “a pickaxe in the hand, and food in the mouth,” while visiting a bakery in Prishtina. Seemingly confusing eating burek with digging down a mineshaft, Veseli’s quote came across less like the “New Beginning” he was promoting and more like a blast from the past.

Most modest

Last night, former journalist and Nisma candidate for the assembly Milaim Zeka had a moment of reflection while arguing with Vetevendosje’s Fitore Pacolli. Faced with criticism for now being part of a coalition made up of three parties he has criticised over misuse of power and corruption throughout his professional career, he responded by insisting: “Listen! We are all the same shit!”

Most ambitious promise

In Prizren last Sunday, Kosovo’s own action movie star Ramush Haradinaj promised that if voted in as prime minister, he would ensure the completion of the visa liberalisation process and transform the Kosovo Security Forces into an Army… within the first three months!

These two issues, that have been in stasis for years are no problem for Haradinaj, blessed as he is with supersonic speed, that can easily overcome the numerous external factors (the European Commission, fighting corruption, Serb List, amending the constitution), required to solve these problems.

Most ‘informative’ answer

As K2.0 compiled information on Kosovo’s political parties’ ideas for the army, we questioned Rexhep Selimi from Vetevendosje on the party’s policy for mandatory military service. Asked about whether this service would apply to all Kosovo citizens, at what age this service would start, how long it would last, and why it would be mandatory, Selimi provided the following, detail packed response:

“Developments with regard to military forces are processes that have frequent updates. Models of many of democratic and developed countries will be also a model for Kosovo. Therefore, there are countries that have always had compulsory military service such as Switzerland, but there are countries that didn’t have it but have returned to mandatory military service such as Croatia. In Kosovo’s conditions, it is necessary to have mandatory military service in line with Kosovo’s specifics.”

Thanks for clearing that up Rexhep!

Most unconvincing explanation

Jakup Krasniqi from Nisma announced on Facebook this week that his party joined a pre-election coalition with PDK because “national security was at risk.” While political parties often play the security card when the going gets tough, Krasniqi took it to the next level, hoping to pin his party’s backtracking on a mysterious, unelaborated on security threat. Perhaps it was the prospect of a government without Nisma that was putting the country at risk, and terrifying Krasniqi so much.

Lowest blow

Queen of the obnoxious remark, Ganimete Musliu, was in action again this week. Responding to Alternativa candidate Ilir Deda’s claim on Facebook that Kosovo would receive a second liberation on June 11 this year, 18 years after the first, Musliu claimed that Kosovo’s first liberation in 1999 had been from Deda’s uncles, a cruel and unnecessary allusion to Deda’s maternal Serbian heritage.

…and the Oscar goes to…

Owner of Elkos Group and LDK candidate for the Assembly, Ramiz Kelmendi, who provided us with two stirring onscreen performances to kick off his campaign this week. First, Kelmendi (or the autocue, which Kelmendi read from throughout) addressed his family, or the male side of his family at least, on the hardships he has faced on his way to becoming a successful businessman, before wishing a Happy Birthday to seemingly everyone in the room, at least judging by his grammar.  

Later in the week, Kelmendi was back on our screens again, appearing outside his elaborate White House-style mansion lecturing two resplendent highlanders from Rugova on the state of Kosovo’s economy. As Ramiz droned on, the two highlanders slowly seemed to lose interest, their silence speaking volumes. We’re glad that Kelmendi is not responsible for the marketing department of Elkos, or the company would likely be bankrupt within a week.K

Image: Majlinda Hoxha.

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