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March 31, 2023

PNL-PDL delegations vow to continue the merger process

The representatives of the two parties favor the idea of a joint congress that might be held on July 12 or 19. Until then, the statute of the future center-right party must be finalized.

The delegations of PNL-PDL met yesterday morning to discuss the steps for continuing the merger process, with the officials of both parties favouring the idea of a joint congress that might be held in July, sources participating in the discussions informed, quoted by Mediafax. According to the sources, the talks held yesterday were not attended by the presidents of PNL, Klaus Johannis, and PDL, Vasile Blaga, and by the vice-president of PDL, Catalin Predoiu, against the background of divergences that appeared following the PNL Congress held at the weekend, over the name of the future party resulting from the merger. PDL was represented in these talks by Gheorghe Flutur, George Scripcaru, Gheorghe Falca, Sulfina Barbu and Adriana Saftoiu, while the PNL delegation comprised Teodor Atanasiu, Sorin Frunzaverde, Mircea Rosca and Cristina Pocora. The same sources announced that the leaders of PDL – PNL agreed to continue negotiations at the level of parity committees and a new meeting will be organized today, after the first session of the new National Political Bureau of PNL, attended by Klaus Johannis and Vasile Blaga. Furthermore, a first discussion over the Statute might be held tomorrow, in the parity committee, starting from the draft prepared by PDL.
Blaga: PDL, decided to continue the construction of the grand centre-right party
Meanwhile, the National Permanent Bureau of the democrat-liberals ruled yesterday with unanimity of votes to continue the process of construction of “the grand centre-right party.” “I reiterate what I said, that names will not be an issue, if everything else is sorted out, and I am convinced that, together with the liberals, we will reach the best variant. Tomorrow (Tuesday), at 6.00 PM, we will have a meeting at PNL in the format party president plus five colleagues and we will also discuss this calendar,” PDL president Vasile Blaga mentioned. He explained that the representatives of PDL and PNL will establish a calendar that will lead to rapid decisions, adding that they need the programme of the presidential candidate, the programme for the country and the Statute of the new party.
Asked if he hinted in the talks with the liberals that PDL would be willing to accept that the name of the new party resulting from the merger is PNL, allowing the liberal leader Klaus Johannis to make the controversial statement in the PNL Congress, the democrat-liberal answered: “I stated that the name of the party may be PNL, PDL, or something else. I am saying these things for a month, but this is the last thing, important, very important, which we will sort out, until then there are much more important things to do.” He specified that he gave no mandate to anyone with this regard. Referring to the liberals’ statements, he warned that “one should take into consideration the heat of a congress.” “I am the president of the party and when I want something I know when
I should intervene and when I shouldn’t,” explained Vasile Blaga, who nevertheless believes that the explanations provided by Klaus Johannis after the congress “are enough.”
Asked if he would agree to PNL “measuring” Crin Antonescu and Klaus Johannis in sociological surveys for the presidential elections, Blaga answered: “We, PDL, would have nothing against it, but this is not our decision, it is theirs, and PDL might propose two people as well. For now, we have a sole candidate, which we further support and promote until surveys will show who will represent the right.” Asked when the sociological measurements for the presidential candidates will begin that will establish the candidate of the right in this race, the leader of PDL answered that these measurements will begin when “things get clarified,” mentioning that the two parties will have the presidential candidate at the beginning of August. Blaga was also asked if Mihai Razvan Ungureanu could enter these analyses. “If he becomes a member of PDL or PNL by then, yes,” he answered.
Johannis: The statement that PDL accepts the name of PNL – my own conclusion
On the other hand, PNL leader Klaus Johannis claims that he understands and respects the “sensitiveness of some PDL colleagues regarding the name and identity,” he had no intention to “touch” it, and the affirmation about PDL accepting the name of PNL for the new party was his own conclusion “following several formal and informal discussions.”
“The strongest political project of year 2014 is the unification of the right, the merger of PNL and PDL. (…) I do not believe that we should introduce false conflicting topics in the merger process. Our merger should mean the grand party of the Romanian right, a doctrine and organizational construction capable to win elections. These are the matters we must concentrate upon,” Johannis wrote on Facebook.
The answer came also via Facebook. The first vice-president of PDL, Catalin Predoiu wrote on his page that for the democrat-liberals the name of PDL is “as valuable” as that of PNL and this is the starting point of the discussions with the liberals, adding that “a resetting” is necessary in the talks with PNL, in the sense of statements that show respect. He also stressed that PDL negotiates with PNL a parity-based merger, not absorption.

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