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April 1, 2023

USL returns to parliament if Roberta Anastase resigns

Reacting to Victor Ponta’s announcement, the Chamber Speaker announced Oppositionlegislator’ per-diems will be cut.

Yesterday, PSD President Victor Ponta said the Opposition was not going to give up its parliamentary protest unless PDL replaced Roberta Anastase as Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies. ‘If they are interested in that the parliament functions, PDL can just appoint someone else from the party instead of Roberta Anastase. But they don’t want the parliament to work, they are just interested in stealing, defrauding and appointing their people to CNA’, said the Social-Democrat, according to Mediafax. In the context, the PSD leader noted that he would personally return to parliament when Anastase is replaced. The night before, Ponta was stating on B1 TV that he was even considering resigning from parliament if Anastase continued to be the Speaker of the lower chamber. In what regards the Democrat-Liberals’ accusations that the USL MPs continue to cash in their pay although they are on strike, the Social-Democrat explained that he had already donated his money to a charity helping children with cancer. In reply, Roberta Anastase said the pay of the Opposition MPs who do not attend the works of the parliament would be cut. The decision made by the Chamber Standing Bureau on Tuesday will, however, apply to the Senate as well. ‘If they did not sign in and participate in the voting, they will lose their pay. If they signed but did not participate in the voting (…), they will definitely not be paid either’, Anastase said. The Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies noted that, if the group leaders motivate the absences, the per diems will not be cut. ‘Let’s see if they are prepared to assume such thing. Under the regulation, the acceptable motivation would be something in the category of a bad health condition’, Anastase said.

She added that the Opposition MPs should donate the money they have earned and not money for which they never worked: ‘hat can you donate if you did not work for the money in question? You can donate money you worked for, not money for which you did not work’. As for Victor Ponta demanding Roberta Anastase’s resignation as Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies, in a press release, she says that USL ‘should better ask for the resignation of its own member Crin Antonescu’ and informal chief Dan Voiculescu. ‘In the last few weeks we have seen an immature struggle of PSD leader Victor Ponta to find justifications for a luxury parliamentary strike lacking all democratic foundation’, said the PDL First Vice-President.

PSD won’t challenge lustration law at constitutional court

On the other hand, Victor Ponta says PSD will not take the Lustration Law to the Constitutional Court because it was changed in such a way as not to restrict the right to stand for election and of being elected. ‘The law doesn’t apply to anyone anyway. To whom is it going to apply? Mr. Iliescu? Mr. Iliescu can run in election if he wants to, but I don’t think he wants to occupy a position in the government’, Ponta ironically said, quoted by Mediafax. In the context, the PSD leader complained about the fact that several exceptions to the lustration principle had been introduced to the law so that it wouldn’t affect selected PDL leaders. ‘There is a group at PDL, including Roberta Anastase and Oltean (Secretary General Ioan Oltean – our note), that are already establishing a practice – they develop a law that should not apply to them. They are going to adopt a law stating that the Criminal Code article on theft shall not apply to PDL members’, the Social-Democrat further said. According to the PSD leader, UNPR will be the party the most affected by the new law. ‘I believe in UNPR there are many former Securitate and communists who will be affected by this. I saw they voted for the law, but they didn’t know what they were voting for’, said Ponta. He also added that the Lustration Law was not affecting PDL members either, because anyone who wants to stand for election is still free to do that. ‘I will bring a team of young ministers to the new government, who, at least from a biological point of view, like myself, could not fall under the scope of this law’, Ponta added. In his opinion, the Lustration Law is a ‘bluff’ showing that PDL has neither specialists nor strategic thinking. ‘Apart from the ridiculous nature of the situation – that they came into the parliament with a law lustrating Mr, Melescanu an hour before appointing him as the head of SIE or lustrating Mr. Ungureanu and Mr.  Boc – the result was a buggered up law which does not resolve anything but demonstrates that PDL has run out of any strategic thinking’, the Social-Democrat leader explained.

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