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March 28, 2023

Basescu: If I lose the referendum, I’m quitting politics, basta!

Suspended President Traian Basescu stated on Romania TV Tuesday night that, if he was successful in the referendum, he would continue his term until 2014 and if he was defeated, he would quit politics. As for the office as head of state, Basescu thinks the Social Liberal Union (USL) wants to obtain it because the president has competence in appointing the heads of the General Prosecution, National Anti-Corruption Directorate (DNA) and High Court of Cassation and Justice (ICCJ), adding that he ‘had had a good hand’ regarding the integrity of the current leadership of all those institutions. The statements were made on ‘Gandul’ Live yesterday and quoted by Mediafax. ‘I have counted 20 MPs with criminal cases. This is the game in the name of which they have compromised Romania,’ said the president. Basescu also said USL leaders Liviu Dragnea, Dan Voiculescu, Viorel Hrebenciuc, Ilie Sarbu and Crin Antonescu were the main artisans of his suspension and that they had pushed PM Victor Ponta who, at the beginning, was more reluctant to the idea. On the other hand, Basescu pointed out that he had not understood the current position of UDMR and UNPR, after going through the crisis with difficulty next to PDL. At the same time, Basescu compared the extension of the referendum hours with the elections in 1946-1947 where everything was done so that the communists could be victorious. ‘I say let’s extend it until the result is the one they want as it was done in 1946 – 1947 when they kept organising elections until the communists won.’ Moreover, the suspended president asks USL leaders not to blame him for using the Constitution in his referendum campaign, reminding that in his campaign for the 2009 presidential election his slogan was also ‘I bet everything on one card,’ holding up the Constitution. In the same context, Basescu said Antonescu and the USL leaders were trying to respond to the loss of credibility in the eyes of the European partners by propagating lies among Romanians and by ‘an edgy nationalistic’ rhetoric, inconsistent with the values of the European Union. The suspended president also accuses Crin Antonescu and Victor Ponta of the massive depreciation of the national currency. Asked about Romanians’ voting intentions as shown by opinion polls allegedly ordered by his staff, Traian Basescu said he was unaware of the feeling of Romanians regarding the turnout on July 29, reiterating that, as far as he was concerned, he was on an ‘impossible mission’ because it is hard for a president to get over 50 per cent after eight years in office and there years of economic crisis.

Basescu: MCV report would have Okayed Schengen entry if it hadn’t been for the new part

On a distinct note, the suspended president said the report on the Mechanism of Cooperation and Verification (MCV) issued by the European Commission was a good one when it comes to recognising progress in the area of justice and would have allowed Romania into the Schengen area if it hadn’t been for the new part on the shortcomings in the functioning of the rule of law.


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