The process of rebuilding 31 buildings in Shijak has not been completed, as the mayor Elton Arbana declared. The Albanian Development Fund and the Municipality of Shijak admit to Faktoje that there are still buildings that are in the process, giving different figures for the completed facilities. Meanwhile, both institutions admit that citizens have not yet entered these buildings.
On March 1, 2023, the Mayor of Shijak, Elton Arbana, declared that the construction of 31 buildings was completed, part of the reconstruction process in this municipality, after the earthquake of November 26, 2019.
” The reconstruction process in the Municipality of Shijak is already completed, with the internal infrastructure remaining only, the asphalting of some parts of the roads located in the ‘Lugina’ neighborhood. In Shijak Municipality, 31 buildings were demolished two years ago. We demolished them, we did the whole process and today we have finished 31 buildings, in which about 630 families will be accommodated”, declared Arbana.
Regarding the reconstruction process, Faktoje addressed a request for information to the Albanian Development Fund, as its implementing unit. Among other things, we asked ADF at what stage are the works for the construction of 31 buildings in Shijak.
Request for information sent to ADF, February 8, 2023
“Regarding the Reconstruction of collective housing, we clarify that; pursuant to Normative Act no. 9, dated 16.12.2019 “On coping with the consequences of the natural disaster” with DCM no. 45, dated 22.01.2020 ‘For the announcement of the new area for development in Shijak Administrative Unit, Shijak Municipality, and the appointment of the Albanian Development Fund as the Implementing Unit’, the Implementing Unit for the construction of new housing or damaged public buildings have been designated; construction and reconstruction of public and critical infrastructure; the realization of constructions in this area and any other intervention, for purposes of reconstruction of this area in order to accommodate in new apartments all the residents affected by this disaster, concluding in the construction of 32 buildings according to the approved General Development Plan. The construction of these 32 buildings includes a total of 656 residential units, i.e. one, two, and three-bedroom apartments”, states officially the ADF.
The Fund, notes on the other hand that 21 buildings have been completed in this municipality and 11 more are in the process.
“For the 21 completed buildings which include 479 apartments, the implementing unit has completed the procedures or is completing the handover procedures to the local self-government unit and after this handover, it is the latter that makes the allocation and accommodation of the families according to the relevant bylaws (short, etc.).
We inform you that the construction works for the 11 buildings that are still ongoing are expected to be completed within the first six months of the year “, clarifies the ADF further in its reply of February 23rd.
Regarding the progress of work, we addressed a request for information to Shijak Municipality on February 8th.
Request for information sent to Shijak Municipality, February 8th, 2023
The Municipality of Shijak emphasizes, among other things, that the ADF is the implementing unit and responsible for the deadline for the completion of the works.
Shijak Municipality’s response, February 20, 2023
“The reconstruction in Shijak Municipality has gone quite well, nearly 87% of the constructions in the apartments have been completed, of which 26 have been completed and 6 of them are still ongoing. The families have not yet been accommodated in apartments, because the Albanian Development Fund, which is also the implementing unit, is in the process of public infrastructure works. It is 537 families that are expected to be accommodated in these buildings”, explains Shijak Municipality.
What can be seen from the official replies is that both institutions admit that the work on the construction of all the buildings has not yet been completed, contrary to what Mayor Arbana declares. In addition, they give different figures regarding the buildings that are still in the process of reconstruction. ADF emphasizes that there are 11 buildings, while the Municipality of Shijak talks about 6 buildings in the process of reconstruction.
In November 2022, Faktoje reported that there were still buildings where the works had not been completed. Residents told Faktoje that in the so-called ‘People’s Neighborhood’ the process was behind, compared to other neighborhoods.
“Lagjia Popullore”, “Vesel Xhepexhiu” street, November 2022
Promises for residential buildings in Shijak
On November 3rd, Mayor Arbana said that the reconstruction process of 31 buildings in Shijak had been completed.
“Today is my happiest day as we are finishing the reconstruction process, such intensive work, long hours of work of almost two years. We have completely finished the reconstruction process and we are now celebrating the allocation of apartments in the 31 buildings of this municipality”, said Arbana on November 3, 2022.
In November, Prime Minister Edi Rama promised that 670 families would be moved into apartments within the month.
“I believe that all the families, it’s 670 families if I am not mistaken, will immediately move in these new apartments”, declared Rama.