At the time of this interview, Ylli Manjani was a legal program assistant with the Institute for Policy and Legal Studies (IPLS), designing and co-managing the IPLS legal policy program and its various projects. Previous to this position he served as the secretary general of the Council of Ministers and legal adviser to the Albanian Prime Minister. In this interview, he speaks largely to his work in 1999-2000 as adviser to the Minister for Legislative Reform and later on as head of the Approximation of Legislation Department in the Council of Ministers. A lawyer by training, Manjani went on to become the deputy minister of Public Work and Transport in Albania.
Michael Scharff and Amy Mawson
Country of Reform:
Date of Interview:
Thursday, June 10, 2010
Ylli Manjani discusses the aim of establishing the Albanian Central Election Commission (CEC) as a constitutional, non-political, body with a clear mandate and immunity. Manjani goes on to discuss the establishment of a single electoral code as a legal framework for local, parliamentary and national elections. He cites the involvement of civil society, particularly the Soros Foundation, as well as intergovernmental organizations such as the International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES), the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), and the Council of Europe as advisors to the committees charged with the design of the CEC and the electoral code. Manjani discusses challenges with voter registration stemming from the lack of credible civil registries and the resultant duplicate voting. Although Manjani expresses disappointment with what he sees as a step backwards in the politicization of the CEC’s composition, he notes improvement in the area of voter registration, for which he largely credits Ilirjan Celibashi as Chairman of the CEC. Brief mention is made of the role of the police in the security surrounding elections, specifically the government’s decision to keep the police out of polling stations unless invited in by the election commissioners.
Ylli Manjani Interview
Nationality of Interviewee:
Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe
International Foundation for Electoral Systems
central election commission