SCiDEV Comments on the Roadmap for the Functioning of Democratic Institutions

SCiDEV Comments on the Roadmap for the Functioning of Democratic Institutions

SCiDEV Comments on the Roadmap for the Functioning of Democratic Institutions

As a non-profit organization that works to strengthen and promote media freedom in Albania and cooperates with the Safe Journalists Network in the Western Balkans as well as other regional and European bodies for freedom of expression and media freedom, SCiDEV presents its comments regarding the Roadmap for the Functioning of Democratic Institutions. The recommendations are also in line with SCiDEV’s contribution in discussion forums held during January 2024.

SCiDEV has participated in two consultation meetings, namely the Meeting with the Members of the Partnership Platform for European Integration for the Political Criteria organized by the Ministry of Justice in Albania on 11 January 2024,  and the “Workshop on the negotiation process for Chapter 24 – Justice, Freedom, Security – opportunities for civil society involvement in the negotiation process” organized on 22 January 2024 by European Movement in Albania in cooperation with Partners Albania for Change and Development and the Albanian Center for Population and Development with the support of the EU.

In November 2023, SCiDEV provided inputs to the consultation of the Roadmap on “Chapter 23 Judiciary and fundamental rights”. SCiDEV urged for the establishment of a comprehensive national framework dedicated to ensuring the safety of journalists, addressing awareness, prevention, protection, and prosecution, with particular attention to the unique vulnerabilities of women journalists and the need for robust protective measures for journalists in the digital realm facing the growing menace of cyberthreats and surveillance.

Read below some of our latest recommendations on the Roadmap for the Functioning of Democratic Institutions:

 On Media in Election Campaigns: SCiDEV notes that generally the measures are declarative, non-specific and unclear and this may affect the way they are interpreted and implemented. SCiDEV reiterates again the vital importance of a transparent and comprehensive consultation process through structured dialogue tables such as European Integration Partnership Platform, the National Council of European Integration, specific discussion tables and forums set together with the relevant actors of the media, civil society, media organizations, experts, independent institutions, and academia to consult the roadmap for the functioning of democracy.

Regarding the Functioning of the Assembly, SCiDEV calls for transparency and accountability, underlining the Assembly’s supervisory role over the government which needs to be strengthened. Furthermore, there is a need for improvements to the Assembly’s communication platforms and better access to information.

In terms of the Role of Civil Society, SCiDEV emphasizes the necessity for concrete improvements in government-civil society cooperation, particularly concerning EU membership negotiations, calling for a democratic and enabling environment for civil society’s effective engagement.

To read our comments on the Roadmap please click here for the full document in English language, and here to access the full document in Albanian language.

 SCiDEV is currently implementing the project “Strengthening Journalistic Safety through Engaged Stakeholder Collaboration and Journalists” in collaboration with Citizens Channel and Free Press Unlimited, with the support of the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Albania.  We will work to strengthen institutional mechanisms by collaborating with the relevant institutions and stakeholders to improve safety of journalists in line with the European Commission recommendations and contributing to the European integration process.