KUKES, THE HEART OF ALBANIA’S ABUNDANT ENERGY

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This is the small city of Kukes, where I am from. It is probably one of the poorest regions of Albania, yet the richest in energy recourses. Maybe there is an American rule that the richest a region is in water resources, the poorest it should remain in order to facilitate the exploitation.

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Albania is blessed with huge water resources and a wonderful mountainous terrain which is perfect for hydropower plants. The Drin River alone contains three big dams, which produce a massive amount of hydroelectricity. The old city of Kukes was covered completely when Fierza HPP was built in 1970-1978, and the new city was built by the Government of Albania, so Kukes is at the heart of Albania’s energy.

When I graduated in 2006 in accounting, I was offered a job at Kukes Water Supply. Ironically, my monthly salary was $120, as humiliating as it might seem, while the average monthly salary in Albania at that time was $500 – $600. Definitely, it was a salary tailored for people like me.

When I worked for Kukes Water Supply, I used to be confronted on daily bases with the irony of supplying the residents of Kukes with water only two to three times a day for half an hour each time. Can anyone imagine, the city surrounded by fresh water supplies its residents with an amount which gives the impression they are living in the Sahara Desert?!

The irony does not end there. People like me, who are born in that region, study hard and have all the legitimate right to live a normal life are given no chance by the Albanian Government to settle. People like me are forced to abandon their homeland. People like me, even when they immigrate to the West, such as in Canada, there is an agenda that awaits them. They are not let to succeed. Their chances to work are limited by politics and the oppressive secret service. People like me are target of the corrupt courts of law and shameful politics.

The richest country of Europe in energy has no place for people like me, who are many. Even the corrupt West does not give us a fair chance to live a normal life. We are stuck between a rock and a hard place.

Today I am fully aware that everything has to do with our massive hydropower. Our energy is exported to other countries while the legitimate residents are denied the benefits. Today I fully understand that the enemy is the US Government, which steals our energy and attacks us wherever we go.

We say in Albania, “Don’t push me until my back is against the wall.” The US Government is powerful, violent, unjust, oppressive, but injustice is weak. The US Government is the enemy that is leaving us no choice. The American barbarism is destroying the future of many people in Albania. I am from the richest region in natural resources in Albania, so residents like me have the right to fight against the greed and barbarism of the US Government – the enemy of humanity and the most barbaric civilization ever existed.

Sabri Lushi