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October 4, 2022

CC, final ruling: Mircea Diaconu loses seat in the Senate

PM Victor Ponta said that what had happened to Mircea Diaconu was ‘a big injustice’. ANI head says it’s regrettable the case had to go all he way up to CC. ARD calls for Antonescu’s resignation.

The Constitutional Court (CC) yesterday decided that Mircea Diaconu may no longer be a senator. The decision is final and irrevocable. According to the Court, the Senate broke the Constitution in the case of Senator Diaconu who has been accused of incompatibility by the National Integrity Agency (ANI). ANI President Horia Georgescu said on Realitatea TV that the CC decision in the Diaconu case was predictable. He added that it was a regrettable thing that the matter had to be taken all the way up to the Constitutional Court. ARD Co-president Mihai Razvan Ungureanu yesterday urged Senate Speaker Crin Antonescu to resign as a matter of urgency, because the Senate sessions that had failed to settle the incompatibility of Senator Mircea Diaconu took place ‘under his patronage’. During a press conference, Mihai Razvan Ungureanu pointed out that the Senate sittings discussing Senator Diaconu’s incompatibility were ‘evidence of how the USL majority in the Romanian Parliament threads any law under foot’. The former PM said the Senate had broken the Constitution in Diaconu’s case. Democrat Liberal Raluca Turcan yesterday said Mircea Diaconu ‘had received a slap from justice’ following the CCR decision and that the senator would remain with a stain after joining the ‘USL politicised game’, and added that Victor Ponta should resign for ‘vouching’ for such a situation.PM Victor Ponta said in Targu Jiu yesterday that what had happened to Mircea Diaconu was ‘a big injustice’, noting that the decision of the Constitutional Court through which Diaconu was losing his seat in the Senate was ‘a decision to be complied with’. On October 31, the Superior Council of Magistracy (CSM) asked the Court to settle a legal difference of a constitutional nature ascertained about the Senate’s refusal to execute the judgement of the High Court of Cassation and Justice on Mircea Diaconu’s state of incompatibility. CSM was showing in its petition that the Senate had refused to enforce the court decision that was irrevocably confirming the state of incompatibility in the case of PNL Senator Mircea Diaconu. ANI says it has repeatedly asked the Parliament to enforce the legal provisions with celerity following the final High Court judgement handed down on June 21, finding the incompatibility in the Diaconu case.According to ANI, the negative vote in Parliament on the enforcement of the court ruling ‘seriously affects rule of law and the constitutional principle of the separation of powers in the state.’ On January 27, 2011 ANI said Senator Mircea Diaconu (PNL) has been in incompatibility since December 2008 because, apart from being an MP, he had also served as manager of the ‘C.I. Nottara’ Theatre in Bucharest, a leading office specific for a local public institution. On October 30, the Senate on October declined ANI’s request to terminate the term of the Liberal senator following the final judgement of the High Court of Cassation and Justice. On November 12, Traian Basescu made a request to the leaders of the Senate, asking to resume debates on the dismissal from office of the PNL Senator Mircea Diaconu. ‘By virtue of the constitutional prerogative of the president of Romania to oversee the good functioning of public authorities, I hereby note that this request for terminating the mandate of the members of Parliament against whom there are final court rulings finding their incompatibility or conflict of interest is not a personal request, but a condition Romania has undertaken as part of the Cooperation and Verification Mechanism. With a view to this aspect, overlooking a court judgment by the Senate vote will be negatively reflected in the next CVM report, with the serious consequence of Romania failing to fulfil the commitments it has made both domestically and towards our partners in the European Union,’ read the president’s letter. The Legal Affairs Committee of the Senate on Tuesday decided to keep its original report prepared in the case of PNL Senator Mircea Diaconu, with the argument that taking a new vote on ascertaining the termination of his mandate was only possible for very solid reasons, by agreement of the leaders of the political groups.

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