On Wednesday, the Lower House rejected the simple motion titled “PSD is very bad for health,” undersigned by 102 PNL, USR and PMP lawmakers. When leaving the plenary meeting hall, Lower House Speaker Liviu Dragnea said he voted for the motion by mistake, Popular Movement Party (PMP) lawmaker Corneliu Bichinet’s speech confusing him.
The motion received 97 votes in favour and 149 against. There were 19 abstentions.
“After Mr Bichinet’s pleading, I didn’t pay attention and voted in favour. I apologise,” Liviu Dragnea stated after the Lower House’s final vote. Asked whether his vote “in favour” was cast on the simple motion, Dragnea said “yes, by mistake.”
“I’ve seen two people that we should recognise – the Prime Minister and Liviu Dragnea – descending among us. This is how Plato put it in The Republic: I went down to Piraeus, in the sense of going from Athens to the port. I’m glad you’re here and you both came to give a signal. Liviu Dragnea, we worked 4 years at the UNCJR; in moments of balancing you must show intelligence. And Corneliu Bichinet from Vaslui is telling you live: remember four words – ‘don’t mess with Terente,’” Bichinet said, addressing Liviu Dragnea.
The signatories of the simple motion were asking Premier Mihai Tudose to dismiss Health Minister Florian Bodog, invoking the vaccine crisis, the failure to complete the construction of hospitals or “the farce of salaries like abroad,” and said that Bodog’s stint has been characterised by hesitations, delays and a complete lack of decision.
On Tuesday, present at the debate on the simple motion, Minister Florian Bodog claimed that the Romanian healthcare system would have been advanced if each of those who held the portfolio, regardless of their political stripes, had taken one step toward the patients’ interest.
“I’m not the perfect minister, and I believe no minister is perfect because there is no such thing as a perfect politician. However, I’m a medical doctor and that is why I know what the wounds of the healthcare system are and what the patients’ and doctors’ expectations are. If each Health Minister, regardless of political stripe, had taken a step toward the patients’ interest, today we would have been far, but some were content to assess their mandate based on Facebook likes, while important healthcare projects were blocked. It’s easy to table a motion on projects you do not carry through,” Florian Bodog stated in the Lower House.
The Health Minister blamed the previous technocratic Government, accusing it of blocking projects that are of major importance for the health of Romanians.
Bodog also claimed that the current Government is seeking “to keep the doctors in the country or to determine the specialists who were driven away by poor working conditions and inadequate pay to return home.”
“Public sector salaries will grow on 1 January 2018, and the salaries of medical doctors and nurses will register a new substantial hike starting on March 1. For these things to be possible, the Government has stipulated for next year a hike of three billion lei in the funds earmarked for healthcare system salaries,” Bodog claimed.