“THE NEW LDA ARMENIA WILL BE A BRIDGE BUILDER”, ALDA PRESIDENT, PER VINTHER, SAID DURING THE OPENING CEREMONY
“The new LDA Armenia, like the others established in the past years, will be a bridge builder! It will build bridges between the various stakeholders of the community, as local authorities, civil society, and the local business and educational sectors, in order to promote democracy and respect for human and minority right”.
Mr Per Vinther, ALDA President, in his speech on occasion of the opening of the new LDA Armenia, stressed that the objectives of this process are manifold.
“First and foremost – he said - is the aim to build a better and fairer community for all through dialogue between local authorities and civil society. A community where local government functions in a transparent and accountable way, where citizens enjoy the possibility of having their say not only on election day, in other words truly participatory democracy, where business and educational institutions contribute constructively towards an environment of peace, prosperity and dignity for all citizens”.
A second objective in the opinion of ALDA President, Per Vinther, is to contribute to the preparation of the host country for rapprochement to the European Union.
“With the opening of LDA Armenia one can begin to see the outline of an LDA network for South Caucasus. LDA Georgia has been the stepping stone, and based also on ALDA involvement in the EUs Eastern Partnership our intention is to establish in the foreseeable future an LDA Azerbaijan as well” stressed Mr. Vinther.
Being the 13th,this Agency will be able to draw on 18 years of experience of other agencies, established in the Western Balkans, and 5 years of experience of LDA Georgia, located in Kutaisi.
In conclusion of his speech,Alda President thanked all those who have contributed positively to making the opening of LDA Armenia possible: “From Rhône-Alpes Region who has accepted to be lead partner for the agency as well as all the other international and national partners who have joined in, over the Union of Communities of Armenia to the town of Gyumri which has agreed to host the Agency, the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe and – not least – the ALDA staff members who have worked tirelessly to keep all the balls in the air until this moment. I encourage them to continue to provide support for the new LDA Delegate who is facing a steep learning curve”