JusMin Toader first to be called for hearings before committee investigating secret justice archives

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The parliamentary committee investigating the Internal Anti-Corruption Protection Service (SIPA) archives has invited Justice Minister Tudorel Toader for hearings next Thursday at 10:00hrs, along with former justice ministers Monica Macovei, Tudor Chiuariu, Catalin Predoiu and Titus Corlatean.

“I propose, if you agree, that after inviting Mr Minister Toader, we visit the SIPA archives to see it physically, to see where it is, how it is maintained, what is the situation is there now. We will schedule it depending on logistics conditions,” chair of the committee Senator Serban Nicolae said Thursday.

He explained that it was decided for hearings to start with Minister Tudorel Toader because the Justice Ministry (MJ) is the owner of this data base.

“The incumbent minister of justice is the most authorised person to tell us what the situation is at the moment; if there are still specialist departments regarding this archive, because there is no operative data base, there is no database currently active. He can tell us what pieces of legislation had incidents, not the public ones, but the ones of lower rank – ministerial orders, internal provisions, regulations. This would be the starting point. I also requested Mr Minister a series of systematised data from which to start and from where to be able to create a strategy to carry out the committee’s activity,” Nicolae said.

The senator mentioned that the list with those invited for hearings before the SIPA Committee includes, among others, former heads of state Ion Iliescu, Emil Constantinescu and Traian Basescu, but also former ministers of justice, former SIPA chiefs, former and current first deputy officers, former and current directors and first deputy officers of the Protection and Guard Service (SPP), former and current interior ministers, the chief of the National Registry Office for Classified Information (ORNISS), attorneys general and their deputies from 2004 to 2017.

“We will start with Mr Ilie Botos, continue with Laura Codruta Kovesi, Tiberiu Nitu, Augustin Lazar and their deputies. Mainly, I would call in the chiefs of the institution for hearings. (…) There is a priority order, there is a rational strategy to conduct hearings chronologically and according to the positions held,” added Nicolae.

Asked what he would do if the people invited do not want to come before the committe, Nicolae replied: “For now, I exclude such a hypothesis.”