Parliament approves appointment of former PM Grindeanu as ANCOM chairman

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Former PM Sorin Grindeanu has been appointed by the joint plenum of the Parliament as the President of the National Authority for Management and Regulation in Communications of Romania (ANCOM), for the remaining period of the 6-year term started at May 11, 2017.

270 of the 387 parliamentarians who were present, voted for, while 117 voted against. The vote was secret, with ballots.

In the debates on Grindeanu’s appointment, the First Vice Chair of PNL Raluca Turcan reminded that the President was removed from the procedure of appointing the ANCOM President, by ordinance.

She also mentioned that this institution regulates a 6-billion-euro market in the communication industry.

Turcan also said that Sorin Grindeanu was dismissed as PM by the parliamentary majority, “because of his gross incompetence”.

“Today, we’re not voting for Liviu Dragnea on the merits, we’re not voting for Sorin Grindeanu on the merits, we are voting for the leadership of an institution regulating an important and very rich market. There will be a vote in the Romanian Parliament, and I am sure you will vote for Mr. Liviu Dragnea’s peace and to calm down the problems inside PSD, although we have the belief that this appointment will not bring Mr. Liviu Dragnea’s peace. However, Sorin Grindeanu was dismissed due to his incompetence, he was dismissed by this parliamentary majority that will vote for him today. How can you guarantee that Mr. Sorin Grindeanu will perform in the leadership of such an important institution?” the First Vice Chair of PNL said.

Rauca Turcan mentioned that a few months ago, Sorin Grindeanu accused Liviu Dragnea of lying, of dictatorial approaches, of an agreement with the so-called system in order to get rid of the criminal cases, and he asked him to resign as the Speaker of the Deputies’ Chamber and as the PSD Chairman. Turcan added that, in his turn, Liviu Dragnea accused Sorin Grindeanu of being a tool used by obscure forces.

“Our question today is: who do you listen today, who do you trust?” Turcan spoke to the parliamentarians of the majority.

She pointed out that PNL will vote against Grindeanu’s appointment as the ANCOM President.

Initially, Victor Ponta was supposed to speak after Turcan, but he said he gives up.

The following one was the USR MP Lucian-Daniel Stanciu-Viziteu. “I’ll start with a quote: ‘We’re talking about an illegitimate group, in our opinion, who occupied the Victoria Palace. PSD is once again under siege. Sorin Grindeanu is a tool. I cannot figure out who is behind this maneuver, but it is a professional coordination’. These are Mr. Liviu Dragnea’s words before the censure motion” the USR MP said.

“I guess this job is a way to attract Mr. Grindeanu back in PSD and to remove Victor Ponta. Anyway, this is not a democratic process by which a former PM reaches the ANCOM leadership against a wage that could be envied by any Romanian banker” Stanciu-Viziteu added.

Corneliu Bichinet reminded that when PSD dismissed Grindeanu, PMP fully supported him, and now, “paradoxically and naturally”, the PMP parliamentarians will vote against Grindeanu.

The PMP deputy said that it’s not important what the opposition does, but he would like to hear Victor Ponta.

Ponta answered to this invitation by coming to the tribune.

“In January, I voted for Mr. Grindeanu’s appointment as Prime-Minister, in June, I voted against the censure motion, and today I will vote for his appointment. I am consistent. I have many colleagues here, in the front of the room, who said that he’s a betrayer, a servant, and so on. He’s not a betrayer, nor a servant, I believe he will be a very good President of ANCOM” Victor Ponta stated at the tribune.

Former PM Sorin Grindeanu was approved on October 24 with 15 “yeses”, 7 “cons” (PNL and USR) and one abstention (PMP), by the specialized committees of the Parliament, in order to take over the position of the President of the National Authority for Management and Regulation in Communications (ANCOM).

Former PM Sorin Grindeanu has been proposed by PM Mihai Tudose for the presidency of the National Authority for Management and Regulation in Communications (ANCOM), after Adrian Dita resigned.

He was appointed as the ANCOM President on May 11, with 236 “yeses” and 10 “cons”.

Since November 2015 to May 2017, Adrian Dita was Public Affairs Manager at Telekom Romania. Since March 2011 to May 2017, he was also a Manager at Romconnection Consulting, according to his LinkedIn account. Between 2010 and 2011, he was Corporate Affairs Manager at International Railway Systems, a group controlled by the businessman Cristian Burci. Since June 2004 to January 2010, he was Corporate Affairs Manager at Vodafone Romania.

On April 27, the Grindeanu Government amended by GEO the Law on the functioning of ANCOM, which provides that the appointment of the president and vice presidents of this institution is performed by the joint plenum of the Parliament, at the Government’s proposal.

Before the approval of this GEO, the ANCOM leadership was appointed by the Romanian President, at the Government’s proposal.

The Presidential Administration criticized the change of the way of appointing the ANCOM leadership, which it considered as an amputation of the attributions held by the President of Romania, labeling this procedure as a non-transparent one, which sends a worrying signal.