The Premier told prefects to assure the best conditions for the ballot, keep their cool and leave aside provocations and respond to all calls from NGOs and independent observers. He warned Secret Telecommunication Service head to stay away from the political fight.
Premier Victor Ponta asked local authorities in a videoconference to inform the population that hindering in any way the right to vote is a felony and to act “extremely harshly” if they have evidence or receive complaints in this regard. He also asked prefects and gendarmerie representatives not to let themselves be provoked by the statements of political opponents. “It’s condemnable and irresponsible to scream everywhere that the referendum is stolen before the referendum even took place. Don’t let yourselves provoked by political statements, they will continue after the referendum too because in Romania the loser rarely admits defeat,” Ponta stated, being quoted by Mediafax. The Head of Government also asked for “complete openness” towards NGOs, national and international observers and the representatives of all parties. “I’m absolutely convinced that on Sunday (July 29 – editor’s note) we will prove once more to those that imagine we’re in who knows what region of Africa or Asia that we are a European country and we know how to democratically choose our future, through a correct and efficient administration,” he added. Also yesterday, the Premier asked Marcel Opris, the director of the Special Telecommunications Service (STS), to make sure the institution he leads does not have any “political connotation,” the Head of Government pointing out that he said that with recent events in mind (the STS installed a special phone line within Basescu’s campaign headquarters – editor’s note). On the other hand, Ponta announced that voting centres will not have surveillance cameras as PDL had asked because surveillance cameras have been used only within special voting centres and there will not be any such centres at this referendum. The Democrat-Liberals however are not giving up easily and are willing to bring their own video cameras. “We will call on all party colleagues that have video cameras at home and we will place them at the entrance of every centre if possible, but we will certainly place them at the entrance of every building that houses several centres,” PDL Cluj President Daniel Buda announced yesterday. Former Premier Emil Boc denounced the fact that the Ponta Government did not approve the setting up of surveillance cameras within voting centres.
USL: The coup started with PDL’s decision to boycott referendumMeanwhile, USL representatives are preparing the Union’s strategy against PDL’s boycott. “We will stake on elements that have to do with organization and mobilization, however we call on the common sense of Romanians that have to decide to what extent they want an aggressive and corrupt minority to continue exercising state leadership against their will,” PNL Deputy Secretary General Dan Mihalache stated. According to him, the real coup d’état started on Tuesday with PDL’s decision to boycott the referendum and with Traian Basescu’s announcement that he will return in office irrespective of result. In his opinion, through their decision to boycott the referendum Basescu and PDL have basically admitted that they have no chance of winning the Romanians’ votes and trust and that the only method through which they can keep their offices is of a procedural character. “This is the real coup d’état because that is the only way to define a situation in which a minority wants to lead against a majority,” Mihalache pointed out. He added that USL will finish its electoral campaign with a large rally in Bucharest.Ponta notifies Barosso over Dem Libs to acknowledge CC rulingPonta announced that he sent European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso a letter in which he presented the latest events surrounding the referendum and pointed out the fact that PDL members do not respect the Constitutional Court (CC) decisions. “The Court’s decisions are not respected by the very persons that complained of a coup d’état. Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me,” Ponta stated yesterday at the start of the government meeting. We remind our readers that Ponta announced on Tuesday that he will send to the European Commission, the political groups within the European Parliament and European Prime Ministers letters in which he will show that they were “deceived and swindled” by Basescu and PDL back when they insisted on the need to respect the CC decision on a minimum voter turnout threshold for the referendum.