Democratic Party of Albania
Partia Demokratike e Shqipërisë
AbbreviationPD[1]
ChairmanDisputed[2] between Enkelejd Alibeaj and Sali Berisha
Leader of the Parliamentary GroupDisputed between Enkelejd Alibeaj and Luçiano Boçi [3]
General SecretaryDisputed between Gazment Bardhi[4] and Flamur Noka[5]
Founded12 December 1990[6]
HeadquartersBulevardi Zhan D'Ark 11, 1001 Tirana, Albania
NewspaperRilindja Demokratike
Student wingGrupimi Rinor Universitar Demokrat
Youth wingForumi Rinor i Partisë Demokratike
Membership (2021)44,000[7]
Ideology
Political positionCentre-right[1][11]
European affiliationEuropean People's Party (associate)[12]
International affiliationCentrist Democrat International
International Democrat Union
SloganShqipëria si Europa! (Albania [becoming] like Europe!)
National Assembly
50 / 140
Municipality
1 / 61
Website
www.pd.al

The Democratic Party of Albania (Albanian: Partia Demokratike e Shqipërisë, PD or PDSH) is a conservative[8][9][10] political party in Albania. Since 2013, they have been the largest opposition party in the country.

Founded in 1990 as a strongly anti-communist party with the majority of its followers being from politically persecuted dissidents of the communist dictatorial regime of Enver Hoxha.

In international relations, the Democratic Party of Albania is an associate member of the European People's Party and a full member of International Democrat Union.

History

Foundation

The Democratic Party was founded on 12 December 1990 with major involvement from Avdyl Matoshi, Azem Hajdari, Sali Berisha and Gramoz Pashko,[13] and Arben Imami, Edmond Budina, Eduart Selami, Genc Ruli, Merita Zaloshnja, Aleksandër Meksi involved only in the early stages of the formation of the party. It is the first opposition party in Albania after more than 45 years of a communist leadership.[14][15] The party was created as an anti-communist movement.[16]

31 March 1991: First pluralist elections

Main article: 1991 Albanian parliamentary election

The First Pluralist would be the first elections since 1923 to allow more than one Party. The Ruling Labour Party of Albania during the 1991 Elections had the biggest advantage during the election. Including the influence over the media.[17] There was no opportunity for the Democratic party and other Anti-Communist parties in the election to influence the rural country side. The Democratic Party platform had promised the transformation of living standards through membership in the European Community, strong connection with the United States and other Western nations, Gastarbeiter in German factories abroad, and immediate steps towards a free-market economy.[17] Which resulted in the Democratic Party coming in second place in results. The Democratic party would ultimately win in the next Election.

22 March 1992: Second pluralist parliamentary presidential elections

The Democratic Party of Albania won the parliamentary elections of 22 March 1992,[18] the second free and fair elections after many decades of mandatory and single communist party candidate elections. Sali Berisha its leader was elected as the second President of Albania, which at the time had executive powers, and Aleksandër Meksi as Prime Minister.[19][20] Sali Berisha with significant contribution in the formation of the party, and Aleksandër Meksi with minor contribution. The second pluralist government of Albania governed by the Democratic Party and its leader was tasked with executing reforms to turn the country from a communist style everything in the hands of the government rule into a democratic country based in free markets, property rights, individual rights, and without interference of the government in the private lives of its citizens.[21][22]

26 May 1996 Presidential elections

Four years after the second free and fair elections, new free and fair election in respect to the new Constitution of Albania adopted in 1991, conform other democratic western and European countries were due. The elections were held on 26 May 1996.[23][24] The main and well known political leaders of the party that governed the Republic of Albania for more than 45 years, under a ruthless regime, were no longer a major participant in the election. However, the party itself and its new and less known leaders at the time of the former Labor Party, the main political party during the communist regime was reformed, changed its platform conform to other parties that held the same believes, mainly left-wing philosophies, conform democratic standards, and its name to the Socialist Party of Albania. It was the only serious opponent and challenger to the Democratic Party of Albania in the 26 May 1996 presidential elections.[24] During these elections the international election observers were limited in numbers.[25] The Democratic Party of Albania and its allies were able to win more than 71 seats in the parliament, on the Presidential Election of 26 May 1996, enough to form the majority and stay in government.[26] Sali Berisha and Aleksandër Meksi respectively remained President and Prime Minister of the Republic of Albania, until new parliamentary election were called due to the Ponzi-Schemes crisis, held on 29 June 1997.[26]

29 June 1997 parliamentary elections

The Ponzi-Schemes lead to civil unrest that culminated in early spring of 1997. The crisis was deeply severe. The government led by the Democratic Party of Albania and its leader due to civil unrest was not able to function properly in many parts of the country, especially in the south of Albania.[27] The fact that these Ponzi-Schemes were endorsed by the government (led by the Democratic Party of Albania) or suggested people to invest in these schemes and the majority of the people who invested in these Ponzi-Schemes blamed the Democratic Party's government for the failure of the Ponzi-Schemes. As a result of this crisis and internal civil unrest new parliamentary election were called on 29 June 1997 to sooth the situation.[27][28][29] As a result of these elections the Democratic Party of Albania lost its elections to its opposition party, Socialist Party of Albania.[30][31]

A little more than a year after the Socialist Party of Albania took control of the government on 12 September 1998 Azem Hajdari one of the founding members of the Democratic Party of Albania and a very important political figure within the party was assassinated. His assassination lead to further unrest in Albania.[32] The Democratic Party of Albania was in opposition and its leader, the former President of Albania (with executive powers), who was in the leadership of the party during this time, Sali Berisha, accused the government of the Socialist Party of Albania as the perpetrator of the assassination of Azem Hajdari.[33]

24 June 2001 parliamentary elections

On 24 June 2001 the next parliamentary elections on the due date as provided by the constitution were held. These elections were also lost by the Democratic Party of Albania although not as deeply as the previous elections. The Democratic Party alleged irregularities and did not accept the result of the elections.[34] ODHIR and OSCE which were involved in monitoring the elections and as an independent party declared on their final report that the elections were marked by irregularities and that repeated voting in some electoral zones increased the violations and irregularities of the election. To what extent these irregularities and violations helped the Socialist Party of Albania win in such a wide range was not determined or conclusive in the election report.[35]

3 July 2005 parliamentary elections

In the 2005 parliamentary elections, the Democratic Party won 56 of the 140 seats and its allies won 18 under the call Time to Change (Koha per Ndryshim). Two other parties also joined the new coalition (PAA of the left wing & PBDNJ of the Greek minority, with 4 and 2 seats, respectively). This meant that with a combined total of 79 seats, the Democratic Party and its allies were able to form a government with Sali Berisha becoming Prime Minister. One of his priorities was Albanian integration to NATO, an objective he accomplished in 2009 when Albania and Croatia were accepted as members. The biggest tragedy after Albanian Civil War happened in Saturday 15 March 2008 which is known as 2008 Gërdec explosions . Officially, Albanian authorities confirmed 26 deaths in the explosions. Officials report the number of injured people at over 300. According to figures published by the Prime Minister's Office, 2,306 buildings were damaged or destroyed in the explosions. Of these, 318 houses were destroyed completely, 200 buildings were seriously damaged, and 188 buildings were less seriously damaged.[36][37]

28 June 2009 parliamentary elections

Main article: 2009 Albanian parliamentary election

On 28 June 2009 the next elections that were due on the date provided were held. The elections were won by the Democratic Party with its electoral alliance.[38] Alliance of Change (Aleance e Ndryshimit). The alliance consisted of mostly Right Wing parties. Shortly before the election the Ethnic Greek unity party had switched to join the Center Left alliance of Edi Rama Unification for Change (Bashkimi për Ndryshim). Due to the PDIU, a party representing the interest of Cham Albanians whose properties in Greece were seized after the Second world war. Nevertheless the Democratic party with its alliance had won 70 out of the 140 seats.[39] It was unclear whether the Democratic party and its alliance had won 70 or 71.[40] On 4 July 2009, Ilir Meta leader of LSI announced he had accepted a deal to form a working majority coalition. Making PD and its alliance have 74 out of 140.[41]

23 June 2013 parliamentary elections

After the defeat in the 2013 parliamentary election, Berisha announced his resignation as party leader. A one-member-one-vote election was held for the first time on 23 July 2013, in which Lulzim Basha defeated his opponent Sokol Olldashi and was elected Chairman of the Democratic Party.[42][43]

On 30 September 2014, a national congress of the Democratic Party was held to elect a new leadership and to announce a tough reform of the party.[44][citation needed]

On the 26th anniversary of the Democratic Party, party leader Basha announced his program for the further modernization and democratisation of the party ahead of the 2017 parliamentary elections.

After previously promising that 35% of the parliamentary candidates would consist of members from the youth movement of the Party, Basha now announced a limitations of all mandates of the party leaders to a two-year term, and the full democratisation of the internal election process.[45]

25 June 2017 parliamentary elections

Main article: 2017 Albanian parliamentary election

On 18 February 2017 members of the Democratic Party and other opposition parties, under the leadership of Basha pitched a giant tent outside the Prime Minister's office in Tirana after thousands of protesters rallied to demand free elections and a technocrat government. The opposition protest further escalated into a larger political conflict. The Democratic Party and its allies refused to register to take part in the 25 June general election, until the government will accept their conditions to secure a free and democratic election.[46][47]

25 April 2021 parliamentary elections

Main article: 2021 Albanian parliamentary election

On 16 February 2019 the Albanian opposition led by Lulzim Basha led protests for three years under his leadership. In hopes to remove Edi Rama from power. As well as raising wages. The opposition coalition consists of the Democratic Party, the Socialist Movement for Integration, the Party for Justice, Integration and Unity, the Republican Party and other minor opposition parties. After the first protests opposition MPs decided to resign in mass from parliament. More than 40 seats were vacated.[48] Due to the protests the opposition parties decided to boycott the local elections that were previously set to be held on 30 June. Prior the 2021 parliamentary election. Lulzim Basha and the Democratic Party of Albania formed an alliance with minority parties. Forming the Democratic Party Alliance for Change (Partia Demokratike - Aleanca për Ndryshim).[49] However this was not enough to deliver the Democratic party a victory it did however increase its seats in Parliament.[50] April 25 parliamentary elections would be the third loss for the Democratic Party.[51] Following the election aftermath Berisha had been declared Persona Non Grata by the United States.[52] Which resulted in Lulzim Basha expelling Berisha from the parliamentary group.[53] Which had began causing party internal fighting between members of Basha's faction and Berisha's faction. On 11 December at Arena Kombëtare the Democratic party national council had convened to remove Basha and his members from the party leadership. More then 4,446 voted for the removal of Lulzim Basha from party leader of the Democratic Party.[54] However, Basha did not recognize the results. The party internal feuds continued. On 6 March 2022 Partial Local elections for Specifically, Shkodër, Durrës, Dibër, Vorë, Rrogozhinë, and Lushnjë. Many Democrats had left to support Sali Berishas coalition "House of Freedom" during the party internal feuds. Which resulted in The Democratic party being placed third and second. While Sali Berisha and his coalition coming first place in Shkodër.[55][56] Following the defeats in the partial local elections. Lulzim Basha stepped down which resulted in Sali Berisha and Enkelejd Alibeaj having disputes over leadership of the party.[57] [58] Although not just Alibeaj and Berisha. Members of Berisha's factions as well began to have disputes between each other. Specifically between Belind Këlliçi and Evi Kokalari. Këlliçi had accused Kokalari that she had been attacking him. Këlliçi claimed that "Kokalari took time to hit me with some of the accusations and slanders used by the Socialists against me." As a result Këlliçi had taken Kokalari to trial. Këlliçi responded to the accusations that Evi Kokalari has made against him with a defamation lawsuit, where he demands 1 million ALL in compensation.[59][60] On 7 July 2022 a big protest was held in Tirana in front of the Prime Minster's Office, Sali Berisha as Chairman of the Democratic Party of Albania had called it weeks before after internal party discussions with the Leadership (Executive) Board and also during round tables with the civil society and experts of various fields one of the largest demonstrations in Albania after the Socialist Party came to power in 2013 inviting citizens from all over the political spectrum. Including the Socialist Movement for Integration leader Monika Kryemadhi.[61] The protest was called under the motto and slogan "Albania in Danger" (Shqipëria në rrezik). Sali Berisha stated that the future of Albania and the Albanians was at risk and the stake of the fatherland was in their hands. Starting from 7 July 2022 an Ombrella Structure called "Front of National Salvation" or "The Unified Resistance Revolutionary Conservative Front for the Salavation of Albania" (consisting of 100 Members from the collective decision-making board from all Opposition Factors of the Albanian Society) will initiate political protests, demonstrations, manifestations, marches and civil disobedience, road blocks (with barricades) riots, insurgency with a concrete plan (Citizen Stand Platform for Freedom and Democracy) that will lead to the Prime Minister's resignation and a Technocratic Transitory Government that will take the country to Early (Snap) Elections as fast as possible. [62]

Headquarters

The party's headquarters are located in Tirana, capital city of Albania,[63] not too far away from the Albanian Parliament (approximately 50 meters away). The newspaper Rilindja Demokratike, the Democratic Party's main news organ, is located at the same headquarters building.

Election results

Election Votes % Seats +/– Government
1991 720,948 38.7 (#2)
75 / 250
Increase 75 Coalition
1992 1,046,193 57.3 (#1)
92 / 140
Increase 17 Coalition
1996 914,218 55.2 (#1)
122 / 140
Increase 30 Coalition
1997 315,677 24.1 (#2)
24 / 155
Decrease 98 Opposition
2001 494,272 36.9 (#2)
46 / 140
Increase 20 Opposition
2005 602,066 44.2 (#1)
56 / 140
Increase 10 Coalition
2009 610,463 40.2 (#2)
68 / 140
Increase 12 Coalition
2013 528,373 30.6 (#2)
50 / 140
Decrease 18 Opposition
2017 427,778 28.8 (#2)
43 / 140
Decrease 7 Opposition
2021 622,234 39.4 (#2)
59 / 140
Increase 13 Opposition

National elections

2005 Parliamentary Elections

After the Albanian parliament elections of 2005 the Democrats won 56 MPs. The list of the elected deputies:[64]

  1. Astrit Bushati
  2. Ramiz Çobaj
  3. Gilman Bakalli
  4. Arenca Trashani
  5. Jozefina Topalli
  6. Nard Ndoka
  7. Rexhep Uka
  8. Aleksander Biberaj
  9. Jemin Gjana
  10. Fatos Hoxha
  11. Aldo Bumçi
  12. Preç Zogaj
  13. Genc Pollo
  14. Gjovalin Prenga
  15. Gjok Vuksani
  16. Pal Dajci
  17. Idriz Xhomara
  18. Sali Shehu
  19. Rahim Kaleci
  20. Shkelqim Ziri
  21. Ndriçim Babasi
  22. Sami Gjergji
  23. Sokol Olldashi
  24. Flori Bajrami
  25. Ferdinad Xhaferi
  26. Gazmend Oketa
  27. Genc Juka
  28. Bamir Topi
  29. Besnik Mustafaj
  30. Lulzim Basha
  31. Bujar Nishani
  32. Ylli Pango
  33. Majlinda Bregu
  34. Gezim Karapici
  35. Spartak Ngjela
  36. Safet Sulaj
  37. Astrit Patozi
  38. Leonard Demi
  39. Baki Shehi
  40. Sali Berisha
  41. Engjell Cara
  42. Luan Skuqi
  43. Dashnor Sula
  44. Aurel Bylykbashi
  45. Blerim Çela
  46. Mevlan Xhindoli
  47. Ilir Bano
  48. Fatos Beja
  49. Mehmet Xheka
  50. Ridvan Bode
  51. Ilir Rusmali
  52. Edmond Spaho
  53. Besnik Jaçelli
  54. Genc Ruli
  55. Bujar Leskaj
  56. Ardian Kollozi

2009 Parliamentary Elections

After the Albanian parliament elections of 2009 the Democrats won 67 MPs. The list of the elected deputies:[65][66][verification needed]

  1. Adriana Gjonaj
  2. Albana Vokshi
  3. Aldo Bumçi
  4. Arben Imami
  5. Ardian Turku
  6. Arenca Trashani
  7. Astrit Bushati
  8. Astrit Patozi
  9. Aurel Bylykbashi
  10. Bedri Hoxha
  11. Besnik Dushaj
  12. Dashnor Sula
  13. Edi Paloka
  14. Edmond Spaho
  15. Eduard Halimi
  16. Enkelejd Alibeaj
  17. Fatbardh Kadilli
  18. Fatos Beja
  19. Fatos Hoxha
  20. Flamur Noka
  21. Florion Mima
  22. Genc Pollo
  23. Genc Ruli
  24. Gent Strazimiri
  25. Gerti Bogdani
  26. Gjergji Papa
  27. Gjok Uldedaj
  28. Igli Cara
  29. Ilir Bano
  30. Ilir Rusmali
  31. Ismail Hoxha
  32. Jemin Gjana
  33. Jozefina Topalli
  34. Kosta Barka
  35. Kreshnik Çipi
  36. Lajla Pernaska
  37. Ledina Aliolli
  38. Lefter Maliqi
  39. Leonard Demi
  40. Luan Skuqi
  41. Luçiano Boçi
  42. Majlinda Bregu
  43. Mark Marku
  44. Mehmet Xheka
  45. Mesila Doda
  46. Myqerem Tafaj
  47. Ndriçim Babasi
  48. Ndue Paluca
  49. Osman Metalla
  50. Paulina Hoti
  51. Rahim Çota
  52. Rajmonda Bulku
  53. Ramiz Çobaj
  54. Ridvan Bode
  55. Rrajmond Hoxha
  56. Sali Berisha
  57. Selami Xhepa
  58. Sherefedin Shehu
  59. Sokol Olldashi
  60. Spiro Ksera
  61. Sybi Hida
  62. Tritan Shehu
  63. Vasillaq Ngresi
  64. Vath Tabaku
  65. Viktor Gumi
  66. Ylli Lama

2013 Parliamentary Elections

After the Albanian parliament elections of 2013 the Democrats won 45 MPs. The list of the elected deputies:[citation needed]

  1. Alban Zeneli
  2. Albana Vokshi
  3. Albina Deda
  4. Aldo Bumçi
  5. Arben Imami
  6. Arben Ristani
  7. Ardian Turku
  8. Astrit Patozi
  9. Astrit Veliaj
  10. Bedri Hoxha
  11. Besnik Dusha
  12. Dashamir Shehi
  13. Edi Paloka
  14. Edmond Spaho
  15. Eduard Halimi
  16. Eduard Selami
  17. Eleina Qirici
  18. Flamur Noka
  19. Florion Mima
  20. Genc Pollo
  21. Genc Ruli
  22. Gent Strazimiri
  23. Gerti Bogdani
  24. Gjergji Papa
  25. Gjovalin Bzheta
  26. Gjovalin Kadeli
  27. Halim Kosova
  28. Helidon Bushati
  29. Igli Cara
  30. Jorida Tabaku
  31. Jozefina Topalli
  32. Kastriot Islami
  33. Keltis Kruja
  34. Kozma Dashi
  35. Liljana Elmazi
  36. Luçiano Boçi
  37. Majlinda Bregu
  38. Mesila Doda
  39. Myqerem Tafaj
  40. Oerd Bylykbashi
  41. Ridvan Bode
  42. Roland Keta
  43. Sali Berisha
  44. Sherefedin Shehu
  45. Sokol Olldashi
  46. Voltana Ademi

2017 Parliamentary Elections

In the general elections of 2017 DP won 43 out of 140 seats in parliament coming second after only SP and being the main largest opposition party of Albania.[67]

  1. Eduard Halimi
  2. Dhurata Cupi
  3. Xhemal Gjunkshi
  4. Oerd Bylykbashi
  5. Fatbardha Kadiu
  6. Edi Paloka
  7. Florjon Mima
  8. Edmond Spaho
  9. Astrit Veliaj
  10. Endri Hasa
  11. Luciano Boci
  12. Enkelejd Alibeaj
  13. Genc Pollo
  14. Myslim Murrizi
  15. Luan Baci
  16. Tritan Shehu
  17. Valentina Duka
  18. Ervin Salianji
  19. Hekuran Hoxhalli
  20. Klevis Balliu
  21. Flamur Noka
  22. Isuf Celaj
  23. Aldo Bumçi
  24. Lindita Metaliaj
  25. Andon Frrokaj
  26. Romeo Gurakuqi
  27. Izmira Ulqinaku
  28. Lorenc Luka
  29. Bardh Spahia
  30. Nard Ndoka
  31. Lulzim Basha
  32. Orjola Pampuri
  33. Rudina Hajdari
  34. Grida Shqima
  35. Albana Vokshi
  36. Jorida Tabaku
  37. Sali Berisha
  38. Halim Kosova
  39. Gent Strazimiri
  40. Fatmir Mediu
  41. Dashamir Shehi
  42. Agron Shehaj
  43. Nadire Mecorapaj
  44. Vangjel Dule

2021 Parliamentary Elections

In the Parliamentary elections of 2021 DP with the Alliance for Change won 59 out of 140 seats in parliament coming second after only SP and being the main largest opposition party of Albania.[68]

  1. Tomor Alizoti
  2. Kasëm Mahmutaj
  3. Xhelal Mziu
  4. Kreshnik çollaku
  5. Dhurata Tyli
  6. Edi Paloka
  7. Agron Duka
  8. Merita Bakiu
  9. Oerd Bylykbashi
  10. Ferdinant Xhaferaj
  11. Andia Ulliri
  12. Gazment Bardhi
  13. Flutura Açka
  14. Lefter Gështenja
  15. Dashnor Sula
  16. Eugen Isaj
  17. Zheni Gjergji
  18. Enkelejd Alibeaj
  19. Eralda Bano
  20. Saimir Korreshi
  21. Luan Baçi
  22. Nustret Avdulla
  23. Ilda Dhori
  24. Tritan Shehu
  25. Flamur Hoxha
  26. Isuf Çelaj
  27. Mark Marku
  28. Agron Gjekmarkaj
  29. Lindita Metaliaj
  30. Kastriot Piroli
  31. Helidon Bushati
  32. Emilja Koliqi
  33. Ramadan Likaj
  34. Greta Bardeli
  35. Zef Hila
  36. Bujar Leskaj
  37. Ina Zhupa
  38. Fation Veizaj
  39. Arbi Agalliu
  40. Lulzim Basha
  41. Jorida Tabaku
  42. Alfred Rushaj
  43. Albana Vokshi
  44. Sali Berisha
  45. Agron Shehaj
  46. Fatmir Mediu
  47. Grida Duma
  48. Shpëtim Idrizi
  49. Belind Këlliçi
  50. Vangjel Dule
  51. Mesila Doda
  52. Dashamir Shehi
  53. Flamur Noka
  54. Orjola Pampuri
  55. Edmond Spaho
  56. Sorina Koti
  57. Ervin Salianji
  58. Bledjon Nallbati
  59. Seladin Jakupllari

Party leaders

Person Period
Sali Berisha 1991 – 1992
Eduart Selami 1992 – 1995
Tritan Shehu (acting) 1995
Tritan Shehu 1995 – 1997
Genc Pollo (interim) 1997
Sali Berisha 1997 – 2013
Lulzim Basha 2013 – 2022
Sali Berisha 2022–present

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