“Former officers in the post of Prefect, a new way of running the state affairs”
“The fact that the government has appointed former army officers as prefects of different districts may be considered as a new way of running state affairs, while valuing true professionals”. This is declared by the Prefect of Fier, Col. Baki Bala in an exclusive interview for Albanian Free Press. According to him, besides acting as encouragement for former army officers, this decision also gives them the opportunity to serve in positions which relate to security, civil emergencies, etc…
Interviewed for Albanian Free Press by Albert Zholi
How come the state requires army officers and the business sector doesn’t?
Many people consider the job of an army officer as a profession. However, the term “army officer” should be used to distinguish people on uniform from the rest of civil society. This means that the term “army officer” is not enough to assess professional, management and leadership qualities. The Ministry of Defence and Armed Forces are different to other state structures, which are focused on a particular domain. They have a multi-dimensional character. Let us not forget that they’re part of society and the state has invested for them.
How would you consider the Prime Minister’s decision to appoint former army officers as prefects?
The Prime Minister did not place his faith on the individuals that he appointed as prefects but on the army officers in general. In the past two decades, we have also seen cases where army officers have served as MPs, ambassadors, Prime Minister’s advisors, ministers’ advisors, civil servants, business managers, etc. The first political project through which military officers can offer their contribution is the project for the appointment of 12 reserve officers in the position of Prefect. I think that the Prime Minister has relied on the experience of many army officers who have served in different positions, on the experience of many other European countries and on his personal conviction that army officers are more than capable of doing this job and other jobs. This is very encouraging for us.
What are the most difficult moments in the job of a Prefect?
The job description of a Prefect is nothing like the job description of an army officer or other positions which require complex analyses and expertise. However, each job has its difficult part. The most difficult moments are encountered when people expect more than you can offer them. The floods taken place in 2017 was one of those moments. These floods happened during my first month in office and I did not have sufficient time to get to know the situation in the district and the institutions responsible in the management of the situation.