Constitutional Court Rules Kosovo to Go to Polls within 40 Days

The Constitutional Court of Kosovo has ruled, after the appeal of the Self-Determination Movement, that the vote of MP Etem Arifi, which was crucial for the formation of the Government led by Avdullah Hoti, was invalid due to his previous fraud conviction, has reported FoNet.
So the Constitutional Court ordered late on Monday the Acting President, Vjollca Osmani to announce snap elections within forty days, after deciding that the vote of MP Etem Arifi on the government is unconstitutional.
Despite having been sentenced to prison with a final verdict, Arifi voted the government led by Avdullah Hoti on June 3. His vote was decisive in the forming of the current government, who received only 61 votes in the 120-seat parliament, the minimum number of votes required.
The decision of the Constitutional Court published on Monday evening, is based on the request of the opposition Vetevendosje, which claimed that the government of Avdullah Hoti is unconstitutional due to Arifi’s vote.
It was also the Ambassador of Kosovo to the Unitet States, Vlora Çitaku who announced on Tuesday that early parliamentary elections will be held within 40 days in Kosovo.
Etem Arifi, an MP with the Ashkali Party for Integration, was sentenced to 15 months in prison in April 2018 for appropriating €26,000 through an NGO.
He was due to start his sentence on 9 March 2020, but the court postponed it twice by four months in total due to his poor health. A third similar request was rejected in early July. In August, a Pristina court issued an arrest warrant against Arifi, but he gave himself up on September 29.
The opposition Democratic Party of Kosovo welcomed the decision of the Constitutional Court.
Earlier on Monday Kosovo Prime Minister Avdullah Hoti called on political parties to agree as soon as possible on election of the new president, saying that solving this issue in January will be late.
Hoti said in a press conference on Monday that the Constitution of Kosovo says clearly that this situation can continue for a maximum of six months. “But we should not wait for the last day. We must solve this issue on time so that the country is not left without institutions,” he said. “I believe that January is too late for overcoming the situation," said Kosovo PM. /argumentum.al