Inclusivity and transparency on water price
The Albanian Helsinki Committee (AHC) has followed the discussion and debate in the Tirana Municipal Council regarding the increase in water price tariffs.
AHC may not analyze, assess or reach a conclusion on whether it is necessary to increase the price of water. The resolution of this issue, in our opinion, requires a study of current conditions and the perspective. A priority here would be the objective and qualified expertise in the relevant field. However, the discussion on this matter should not underestimate and should take into consideration the respect for the principle of proportionality and in more concrete terms that the proposed increase is studied vis-à-vis social-economic conditions of the people and particularly taking into consideration vulnerable families or citizens.
AHC also considers that the discussion of this problem is sensitive and of public interest. The issue has caused reactions by citizens in the media. In that sense, AHC would suggest that the discussion is not confined to discussions in the local government bodies, but rather be inclusive and transparent. In this regard, we have in mind the implementation of requirements envisaged in the Law no. 146/2014 “On public notification and consultations,” which requires respect for deadlines and procedures for policies of public interest.
Any consultation conducted about policies or draft decisions of public interest should be effective and not formal, guarantee inclusivity of all stakeholders, civil society organizations and any citizen wishing to contribute through recommendations or suggestions in this process