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March 23, 2023

Stray dogs law up for vote today in Parliament

Lower Chamber Speaker Valeriu Zgonea announced yesterday that the draft law concerning stray dogs will be analyzed by the Lower Chamber’s juridical and administration commissions, and will be debated within the plenum meeting today and voted on in order to be sent to promulgation. According to Zgonea, the members of the two commissions were expected to meet last evening in order to “hear all parties involved,” Bucharest Mayor Sorin Oprescu being invited at the hearings.
Constantin Ciorascu, the administrator of the company on whose grounds four-year-old Ionut Anghel was killed by stray dogs early last week was heard yesterday at the High Court of Justice’s (ICCJ) Prosecutor’s Office. Judicial sources quoted by Mediafax claim that the man was brought by police at the prosecutor’s office because he did not show up after prosecutors subpoenaed him for hearings in the case concerning Ionut Anghel’s death. Ciorascu did not make any comments when arriving at the Supreme Court’s headquarters. Asked whether he feels guilty for Ionut’s death, the man gestured negatively.
Romanian Prosecutor General Tiberiu Nitu said that an inquest into the death of 4-year-old shows signs of being rather complex, Agerpres informs. He added the prosecutor is currently trying to establish what had effectively happened and the elements conducive to the tragedy. The Prosecutor General, on arriving at the Superior Council of Magistracy’ headquarters, was asked whether early inquiry found serious violation of the law or of the job tasks and he stressed he cannot answer the question, since the inquest is at a very early phase.
Also yesterday, the opposition Democratic Liberal MEP Monica Macovei, in a release on Monday, called for Bucharest Mayor Sorin Oprescu to step down, arguing that he, in six years, has failed to do anything that might have prevented the 4-year-old’s death; she said the Social Liberal Union (USL, at rule) members who hold public positions should also tender resignation, in the event that they rallied behind the mayor.
PDL Bucharest announced yesterday that it is expecting the party’s National Permanent Bureau’s (BPN) decision concerning the implementation of the Bucharest General Council’s PDL members’ decision to resign, although PDL Bucharest’s interim president Adriean Videanu had announced on Sunday during a press conference that the resignations will go into force on Monday. Also on Sunday, Videanu stated that when he finished his term as Bucharest Mayor he left Sorin Oprescu the only dog shelter, a shelter that is currently used in proportion of 10-12 per cent. Moreover, Videanu stated that the current mayor has a budget of RON 18 M for the shelter, of which only RON 2 M were spent.
Referendum on stray dogs is useless, Antonescu says
PNL President Crin Antonescu considers that the referendum on euthanizing stray dogs, a referendum approved at the end of last week by the Bucharest General Council for October 6, is “useless,” asking what is the point for such a referendum when the law will most likely be adopted within the Lower Chamber this week. “I believe that Bucharesters’ opinions are not split when it comes to the fact that it is not normal for a country that claims to be civilized to have stray dogs on the streets and for people to be at risk of being bitten or even killed as happened in this situation. I don’t need any kind of referendum for this,” Antonescu said on Digi 24. He pointed out that the problem is catching these dogs, removing them from the streets.
Asked about the legal consequences of this referendum, Antonescu said: “First of all the referendum is taking place under the condition of validity, Mayor Popescu Piedone for instance seriously doubted that fifty per cent plus one of Bucharesters will take part in the referendum. So if they don’t show up we will spend money for nothing. If they do show up and say they want the dogs to be euthanized either they will already have a law and so the referendum will be useless, or they will theoretically have a law that does not impose euthanasia and so the referendum will not have the strength of law. If they say they don’t want the dogs to be euthanized and the law did stipulate it then it’s useless because a referendum cannot replace a law. (…) The referendum is useless, it’s actually embarrassing.”

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