Tirana: Bajram Begaj, a retired military officer and politician, took oath at a swearing-in ceremony in Parliament here as the 9th President of Albania.
In his first address in front of the lawmakers as the President, the 55-year-old declared that he will support and respect both the government and opposition’s work, calling for cooperation between political parties instead of conflict, reports Xinhua news agency.
“I will carry out this mission above the parties. I will not remain neutral towards anyone who puts political interests above the nation’s interest and I will support and insist on the cooperation between all political forces,” Begaj added.
He urged political parties to “get away from the politics of confrontation and replace it with the politics of dialogue”.
“Unity is needed more than ever to ensure the vitality of our nation. Let us all together make our Albania even more beautiful, for it to be in the place where it belongs.”
Begaj was elected President on June 4.
A total of 83 lawmakers participated in the voting that took place in the plenary session in Parliament, where Begaj received 78 votes in favour, while four lawmakers voted against and there was one abstention.
He was a major general and held the post of the chief of general staff of the Albanian Armed Forces.
At his swearing-in ceremony, Begaj was accompanied by his wife Armanda and his two sons.
On Sunday morning, former President Ilir Meta posted on the social media his last message directed to the people as the president, a post he held for five years since July 2017.
“It was an extraordinary honour and privilege to serve for these five years as President of the Republic of Albania. I wish the best for our homeland and nation! I wish peace and prosperity for every Albanian family,” Meta wrote.