National institutions for human rights in Albania, the People’s Advocate, the Information and Data Protection Commissioner and the Commissioner for Protection from Discrimination signed today a co-operation memorandum. The drafting of this document was made possible under the coordination and assistance of the OSCE Presence in Albania and was endorsed by the Chairs of the aforementioned authorities, namely Ms. Erinda Ballanca, Mr. Besnik Dervishi and Mr. Robert Gajda. The memorandum aims at strengthening inter-institutional co-operation according to the applicable legislation with relevance to their specific activities in order to boost effectiveness in upholding human rights and fundamental freedoms by public administration bodies and beyond.

At the ceremony held on this occasion, the head of OSCE Presence Mr. Bernd Borchart held that “the Albanian society needs concrete solutions in the field of respect of human rights and these rights must be remedied should violations occur. Your common role consist in preserving and protecting these rights and we hope that the co-operation roadmap will help you to reach this objective”.

While emphasizing the need for human rights institutions in Albania to perceive each other as allies the People’s Advocate, Ms. Erinda Ballanca also noted that “in our view point, the protection of human rights does not only require the inclusion of each and every one of us, rather it is indispensable to include in our team as many players as possible”.

Mr. Besnik Dervishi considered that this agreement by medium of combining experiences and capacities, will contribute in increasing work performance and results of the relevant institutions. “We have already rendered 200 decisions, part of which have paved a largely unexplored path. And here I make reference to decisions imposing transparency for Public Authorities at higher levels with respect to domains considered taboo such as concessions, public procurements, court and Prosecution files, arbitration, state secret or misuse of the notion of confidentiality, as well as to the transparency of the activities of Vetting bodies” – argued the Commissioner Dervishi.

While, the Commissioner for Protection from Discrimination, Mr. Robert Gajda stressed the importance and necessity of co-operation among the authorities in “creating a larger and sustainable alliance among institutions for the protection of human rights, public bodies, independent institutions and civil society organizations in the fight against discrimination, inequalities and injustice”.

The agreement reflects the commitment of these authorities in embracing a common approach to the protection of fundamental human rights in the frame of institutional and social activities in our country. Through the exchange and coordination of better legal and administrative practices, these rights will be protected from unlawful/irregular practices and/or negligence of public administration or third parties acting on its behalf. The three Authorities will monitor the parliamentary activity so that standards cannot be violated during the process of consultation of the draft laws ahead of their adoption. The Parties shall cooperate to promote the continuous improvement of the national legal framework, in accordance with the international conventions signed/ratified by Albania.

Moreover, to maximize the administrative capacities, local offices will be jointly used in order to exchange and refer complaints and issues to central institutions. The Parties will intensify staff performance by medium of continuous training and exchange of know-how and expertise aiming to improve administrative practices where the merit of the activities of the other Party is affected. Concurrently, they will cooperate in order to conduct joint national and international events aimed at raising awareness with respect to ensuring fundamental rights and freedoms.