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June 25, 2022

Labour Code war moved from Parliament to Constitutional Court

Yesterday, the representatives of the opposition challenged the request by the Executive of a vote of confidence over the Labour Code and raised possible violations of constitutional provisions on the right to work, right to annual leave, right of association and right to strike.

The Emil Boc Government has come out of the eight no-confidence vote successfully. After nearly seven hours of fights and acid statements, Wednesday night, the MPs rejected the censure motion on the Labour Code with 212 votes in favour and four against, while USL would have needed 236 votes to take down the Government. Under the Constitution, the rejection of the censure motion means that the law changing the Labour Code over which the Government had asked for a confidence vote in Parliament has been adopted.

The opposition representatives have not wasted any time and, as announced fore, yesterday sent a petition signed by 112 deputies from PSD, PNL and PC to the Constitutional Court of Romania (CCR). The leader of the PSD political group in the Chamber of Deputies, Mircea Dusa, noted that their petition had raised ‘the abusive manner in which the Government asked for a confidence vote from the Parliament in order to avoid debates on the new Labour Code.’ According to Dusa, the opposition has asked the Constitutional Court to rule on the merits, regarding specific provisions of the law changing the Labour Code which they claim to be contradicting Fundamental Law articles on the right to work, right of association, right to strike, right to salary and decent living. CCR will hear the case on March 23.


Cheerful and exuding spiritual remarks, Emil Boc said the rejection of the censure motion over the Labour Code was a new battle won in the process of reforming the state. Moreover, he joked with the journalists accredited at the Parliament about his now famous purple tie: ‘Didn’t I tell you this morning that, if the tie is purple, the outcome will be good?’

Even in his speech given before the Parliament, Boc appeared very detached and inclined to joking. He criticised the lack of substance of the motion introduced over the Labour Code which he combated with a few lines from a poem by Eminescu: ‘This censure motion has virtually no connection with the Labour Code, with the confidence vote we requested from the Parliament, and the very few references to the Code are inconsistent, copied or just empty sentences lacking substance. Two thirds of the text of the motion is populist attacks. The Socialist Alliance couldn’t care less about the jobs of Romanians. (…) If I were to summarise that in a plastic way, I would use Eminescu’s verses: .’ In his opinion, USL introduced the motion against his Cabinet because it was afraid that the visible economic recovery might decrease its chance to win the legislative election in 2012. ‘They (USL – our note) will deflate like an electoral donut until 2012,’ said the PM.


As already announced, even if they remained in their benches, the MPs of the power abstained from vote. With five exceptions: four PDL and one UDMR members who did vote. Four of them voted against the motion (Verestoy Attila, Daniel Oajdea, Marius Spanu and Orest Onofrei – our note), and one – PDL Deputy Mircia Giurgiu – voted in favour of the Opposition’s motion and against his own Government. Giurgiu explained that he had a background in the trade union movement and could not have voted differently. ‘I thought the Labour Code should have been debated in Parliament so that we could make amendments and be sure to generate a Labour Code good for all the people it is meant for,’ said the PDL deputy, quoted by Mediafax. He noted that he did not fear the possible sanctions of his party for his vote. The deputy also said that, if excluded, he would continue as an independent.

In fact, immediately after the vote, PM Boc announced that Giurgiu would be excluded from PDL. Moreover, the premier says there is no ‘way back’ in his case.

On the other hand PDL Deputy Marius Spanu said he had voted on the motion because he wanted to demonstrate on behalf of all his Democrat-Liberal colleagues that he was free to express his vote and that no one had prevented the MPs of the power from voting.

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