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January 18, 2022

Government, under Basescu’s fire

The president asked ASF management, Labour minister and secretary of state with Ministry of Education to resign.

President Traian Basescu convened another press conference on Wednesday evening at Cotroceni Palace, launching new harsh attacks against the ruling coalition and its members. First of all, the head of state requested Parliament to immediately dismiss the entire management of the Financial Supervision Authority (ASF), where, in his opinion, there is ‘a morass’ and “we cannot play with a EUR 10 bln market’. ‘I request Parliament to immediately dismiss the entire management of ASF. ASF is a morass where all political clients found a parking space, otherwise deeply incompetent and unprepared for this work. Either we are referring to Radu Rusanu, Daniel Daianu, (Mircea) Ursache, the wife of Mr Chitoiu, Dan Mircea Popescu, Mrs Zgonea, the advisors to the Prime Minister, all this morass has to be removed,’ President Basescu said in the press statement at the Presidential Cotroceni Palace. “If you attentively look at the clientele of ASF and the incompetence of ASF, it seems like the genealogy of USL. You find them with relatives, godfathers, in-laws, with the whole list of clientele. The genealogy of USL, this is ASF, and it is representative in terms of clientele system and incompetence,” Basescu added. In the context, he also criticised Dan Radu Rusanu, the president of ASF, and vice-president Daniel Daianu for the huge wages they take from the institution. “After he proved his competence in doing personal business with Sima, (Daianu) came to recover his losses as a member of the leadership of ASF,” Basescu commented.
Following the president’s accusations, ASF announced in a press release that it received warnings from the insurance market that, if it makes tough decisions regarding Astra, the leader of the market, the leadership of the institution will be sacked, drawing a parallel between the position of Astra owner Dan Adamescu and that of President Basescu. “We cannot stop noticing the similar attitude of the president of Romania and the owner of Astra. For the owner of Astra, the president of ASF has no idea about insurances, while for the president of Romania the president of ASF does not have competencies on the capital market,” ASF affirms in its communiqué. Moreover, according to “Sursa zilei”, ASF informed that the former leaders of the Authority earned huge incomes, such as Constantin Buzoianu, known as being close to the president, under whose mandate the ASTRA company was issued no significant sanction. During a 2-month period, Buzoianu received an income of almost ER 152,000. In her turn, the former secretary of Emil Boc, Stefania Ferencz earned in the two months that preceded the founding of ASF, incomes in excess of EUR 64,000. PM Ponta also remarked yesterday that the president requested the revoking of the top management of the Financial Supervisory Authority (ASF) because it looked into the business of the owner of Astra Asigurari, who is one of the president’s sponsors.
Ponta, solidarity with the thieves in the vote over the immunity of MP Cosma
The president also blamed PM Ponta for the vote in Parliament against the arrest of PSD deputy Vlad Cosma, saying that through this vote, Victor Ponta wanted to prove solidarity with the thieves, confirming that he is a corrupt prime minister. According to Basescu, the 222 lawmakers of PSD, UNPR and PC that prevented the proceedings of justice, starting with Premier Ponta and Liviu Dragnea, have a big responsibility for the way in which the activity of the Parliament will be reflected by the next MCV report.
STS connected with Huawei
Also in President Basescu’s opinion, Ponta is playing a dirty game in relation to STS and a changed STS Law will not pass the constitutionality test of the Constitutional Court of Romania. ‘From reading the memorandum (signed by Minister Nica with China’s Huawei), I understood why the prime minister wants the STS under Government’s authority. It is clear that the commitments to the Chinese company have compelled Victor Ponta to enlarge the range of offerings for this Chinese company (…) I now understand why Mr. Victor Viorel Ponta has played this game, which is a dirty game, at the expense of national security. National security must not be entrusted to some foreign IT companies, irrespective of how much friendship there is with the country in question (…) I find it difficult to believe that such a law will pass the test of the Constitutional Court of Romania (CCR), since we know what the legal tasks of STS are’, said Basescu.
Regarding the Government’s activity, the president argues that the ego clashes between the parties making up the ruling Social Liberal Union (USL) going on for three weeks are delaying a partnership agreement between the Romanian Government and the European Commission on the use of the European Union’s earmarks for Romania in 2014-2020.
Removal requests for Campeanu, Duminica
President Traian Basescu also called Labour Minister Mariana Campeanu  to resign if her husband does not have a severe disability justifying his qualification for the 1st degree invalidity category. ‘There have been some recent developments, but I think these must not lead us to forget our responsibilities. Therefore, I wish to state my point of view on a couple of matters currently under public debate. First of them, to begin my statement, is concerning the Minister Campeanu. I am directly asking her: if she knows that her husband is not disabled, not in a wheelchair, not having a severe disability to justify his qualification for the 1st degree invalidity category, she must resign, without waiting for further inquiries,’ Traian Basescu said.
He asked PM Victor Ponta as well to remove from office Stefania Duminica, Secretary of State with the Ministry of Education, for plagiarism, adding that he understood the fact that the Premier found it difficult to remove somebody from office on this ground.
In retort, Labour minister Mariana Campeanu said that the press article about the retirement of her husband was “solely aimed at denigrating her” and her family, through a “non-deontological initiative that is not supported by hard evidence,” adding that she considers the possibility of suing the authors in court. PM Ponta, too, defended Campeanu, saying that he will do the same for all his ministers, as long as the head of state does not bring evidence in support of his accusations.
As for the state secretary Duminica, Education minister Remus Pricopie said that he had several discussions with her and understand that she will stand down, but a possible removal from office can be operated by the government, not by him.
Basescu: I would make a great prime minister
As for the President’s plans, he told public television broadcaster TVR, when asked if he was preparing to become head of the government, that he would make ‘a great prime minister’, should he be prepared to become one, which he is not. ‘With the experience that I have, I would make a great prime minister, but I do not intend to be one,’ he said, reiterating the fact that after the end of his term in office he wants to ‘breed’ a political party (e.n. Traian Basescu is referring to the People Movement Party), which objective would be the modernisation of the Romanian State and an increase in Romania’s competitiveness. Asked when such party is supposed to come to power, Basescu said that probably in 2016.

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