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Ex-MP of Ruling Party to Lead Albania’s Public Broadcaster

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The board of directors at Albania’s public broadcaster appointed Alfred Peza, a former MP of the ruling Socialist Party, as General Director on Tuesday, local media reported, raising fresh questions about the independence of the service.

The chairman of the board, Leka Bungo, told BIRN that Peza’s appointment does not violate the law, which forbids any member of a political party or anyone who served as an MP in the last two parliamentary mandates from heading the Albanian Broadcasting Service.

Though his MP mandate expired in 2017, 56-year-old Peza remained a director of the Socialist Party until September 2021.

“He has supplied to us a document that he is not member of the [Socialist] Party,” Bungo said.

As head of the richest media group in the country, Peza will take charge of an annual budget of more than 20 million euros, collected mainly from taxpayers. Peza previously worked in private media before entering politics with the Socialist Party in 2013, the year the party returned to power.

His appointment comes after the Socialist-controlled parliament in 2021 elected the party’s former spokeswoman, Armela Krasniqi, as chairman of the Audiovisual Media Authority, Albania’s nominally independent broadcasting regulator.

Source : BalkanInsight

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