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Bucharest District 1 Mayor Andrei Chiliman is stepping down as a leader of the National Liberal Party. Chiliman made his decision known through a public letter addressed to PNL President Crin Antonescu, where he says he is renouncing his membership of the PNL Central Political Bureau, B1tv reports. The mayor explains he no longer wishes to be a member of any PNL leading body following the Congress on February 22-23. ‘I refuse to benefit from the rightful membership of the Central Standing Bureau, a position I am entitled to under the new party Statutes by virtue of my office as Mayor of District 1. My refusal to be a member of the current PNL leading bodies is based on my firm conviction that, in PNL and in any other party claiming to be free and democratic, there should be no ‘rightful’ offices except honorary ones. I will remain faithful to my principle that meritocracy and competition should prevail over arbitrariness and discretion in the National Liberal Party. Based on such principles, I say the PNL Statutes adopted by the latest Congress is nothing but a listing of anti-democratic norms for a single purpose: total subordination of the party to a single man’s political objective’, Chiliman explains in his letter.