Romana Vlachudin, the ambassador of the European Union in Albania, is under OLAF investigation for purchasing a 350-square-metre house in Tirana for €1,6m. This is rather crazy since local experts say this specific house is not worth even a third of the selling price.
At the time of the sale, similar houses in the same area and bigger ones were priced at least €1m less than what the Commission paid.
This investigation is of particular significance because it was opened four weeks ahead of Albania’s general election on June 23.
On more than one occasion, Vlachudin has openly supported Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama’s ruling socialists. The fact, however, that the Rama-friendly EU Ambassador was placed under investigation before the election, may signify that given the circumstances, the European Commission does not wish to take sides in the electoral process of Albania.
Nevertheless, the good ambassador’s pick has few chances of winning the election – and no one wants to be associated with a loser, especially not the European Commission.