The Premier-designate won’t pick another nominee and will await Alistar to join the Executive once he gets his incompatibility situation settled.
PM-designate Victor Ponta yesterday announced he had withdrawn Victor Alistar’s nomination for the post of delegate minister for governmental strategies and relations with the civil society, in order not to jeopardize the investiture of the new government, given Alistar being banned from holding public office for three years, until August 7, 2012, as a result of the National Integrity Agency (ANI) ascertaining his incompatibility status. “Today (yesterday) we had a discussion with Mr. Victor Alistar, following attacks by our political opponents and the mass-media. Together, we have decided that he would not be for now among the ministers put before Parliament, in order not to jeopardize the government investiture procedure and not to create any animosity right from the beginning of our activity,” Ponta said, who made the point he would not make another nomination for the post. Ponta however described the idea as good and valid of a Government-subordinated department for transparency and relations with the civil society, and added that he awaits Alistar to join the government team at the soonest, once a final decision is reached on his incompatibility. Victor Alistar explained yesterday his withdrawal: “There was a real risk the President Basescu should refuse to sign the decree and that would affect the list of the entire Government”, adding he will join Ponta’s team as soon as possible. Alistar denied Wednesday his being in an incompatibility situation, denouncing the ANI action as abusive and damaging for his image. ANI accuses Alistar to have been in an incompatibility situation during 2001-2009, as he had concurrently been an employee at the Romanian Public Employment Office, executive director of the Romanian Transparency Association and a lawyer.Ponta also announced that the governing program and the membership of the incoming Cabinet were to be submitted before Parliament yesterday evening. The leaderships of the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate were to meet in session Friday to set the timetable of hearings of the ministers designate to the new Cabinet. Ponta also said that Monday, after the investiture in Parliament, the new government would be able to convene in its first session.
UNPR vice-president joins PSD
Cristian Rizea, president of the Social Democratic Party (PSD) Diaspora, told a press conference yesterday that Nicolae Popescu, vice-president of the National Union for the Progress of Romania (UNPR) resigned from the party and joined the PSD, his tasks including coordination of party organizations in Canada and the USA. Popescu made the point his decision to join the PSD was a personal one. UNPR and PSD signed a protocol Wednesday whereby the former pledges to vote for and support the Ponta Government. UNPR’s former ruling coalition partners, the Democrat-Liberals said that the UNPR is free to vote in favor of the new Executive and the protocol would not have an impact on local alliances. However, Democratic Union of Hungarians in Romania (UDMR) Senator Gyorgy Frunda criticized UNPR’s decision to enter alliance with Social-Democrats, accusing the Union of “political prostitution”.