Senator Biro Rozalia, the president of UDMR’s Council of Union Representatives (CRU), is UDMR’s proposal for the offices of Culture Minister and Deputy Premier, Kelemen Hunor announced at the end of the party’s Standing Council meeting, pointing out that this nomination will be on the Premier’s desk by August 1.
At the same time, UDMR’s Standing Council decided that Kelemen Hunor will be the party’s presidential candidate. “In 2014 too we have all arguments to come up with a candidate in these presidential elections. We have to show that we have a vision for Romania, for Romanian society and for the Magyar community in this country. No Romanian party and no candidate have in their program the goal of representing the interests of the Magyar community,” Kelemen Hunor stated. He pointed out that UDMR’s Standing Council meeting analyzed the pros and cons and reached the conclusion that UDMR will have a presidential candidate this year too. Kelemen stated that he is honored by this proposal and he accepts the candidacy. “This proposal honors me and I have accepted this candidacy and I am convinced that starting tomorrow all efforts we make will go in the direction of showing that we have not only a powerful candidate but also a correct, coherent vision for Romania of 2014 and for Romania’s future,” the UDMR President added.
Concerning the proposal made for Rozalia Biro to replace Kelemen in the offices of Deputy Prime Minister and Culture Minister, the UDMR President pointed out that he talked with Biro Rozalia on Monday, asking her to accept the nomination for the offices of Culture Minister and Deputy prime Minister. He pointed out that since this was about a joint holding of the two government offices he looked for a solution that would correspond. “Mrs. Biro Rozalia is the president of CRU, which according to the Statute is the second position within UDMR, and in these conditions it was natural for her to be the person that takes the offices within the government,” Kelemen Hunor added.
In this way, “Romania will for the first time have a woman in the office of Deputy Premier,” Kelemen Hunor pointed out. The UDMR President stated that the nomination will be validated by the CRU too, and will be on Premier Victor Ponta’s desk by August 1, the date when he will step down.
Culture Minister and Deputy Premier Kelemen Hunor jointly agreed with Premier Ponta that he will resign on August 1, and until then he will handle the ministry’s daily issues and the budget rectification. Kelemen Hunor had announced last Friday that UDMR will remain a member of the ruling coalition but he will step down from his offices of Deputy Premier and Culture Minister. The decision to resign from the government was taken within UDMR’s Standing Council, a body that was summoned as a result of the fact that the Romanian government joined the EC in a lawsuit concerning a civic initiative backed by UDMR. At the same time, Kelemen Hunor had announced that he had reached a compromise with Premier Victor Ponta so that the civic initiative concerning ethnic minorities will be debated within the Parliament’s committees this autumn, and that Romania will not send the new documents to the European Court of Justice before the debates are finalized.
Rozalia Biro pointed out in her turn that her nomination is in fact “logical” given the position she holds within UDMR – President of the Council of Union Representatives (CRU), the second position in the party.
Rozalia Biro (49) was elected Senator in 2012 in Bihor County, in an electoral college in which ethnic Hungarians are the majority. From 2004 to 2012 she was deputy mayor of Oradea. She has been president of CRU since 2007 when she was elected over lawyer Frunda Gyorgy. Since 2013 she has been president of UDMR’s women’s organization.
Biro Rozalia has been investigated by the National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA) since 2012, for malfeasance in office, the case being based on a National Integrity Agency (ANI) report dating back from 2010, a report that accused her of conflict of interests because in 2006 while she was both deputy mayor of Oradea and member of the Partium Foundation’s Administrative Board, a foundation that works for UDMR Bihor, she approved the leasing of a downtown building to this foundation. Biro attacked ANI in court and asked for the report to be cancelled but she lost the lawsuit in 2012, so that she is currently under investigation in an ongoing case.