President Klaus Iohannis participated in the Adevarul Live programme on Wednesday where he answered questions on various topics, ranging from his relationship with PM Victor Ponta which he called ‘a working relationship’, to the independence of justice and the state of normalcy he wants Romania to enter.
‘There are no political discussions, they are discussions between the President and the Prime Minister’
President Iohannis said that he has a ‘working relationship’ with Prime Minister Victor Ponta and that he finds it perfectly normal to discuss with him when the situation requires it.
‘That’s what I wanted our relationship to be, as you see it, a working relationship. We have no cohabitation agreement, no pact or understanding to abide by. I am the President of Romania, the Prime Minister has his specific responsibilities. I find it is perfectly normal that we should sit down to discuss, because we are responsible for the smooth functioning of the country. This is no dramatic statement. That’s the way things are. I find it normal that we should meet whenever the situation requires it, we may meet on one week, then we may skip the next week or not, a month may pass, but I cannot imagine how the President and Prime Minister could work for Romania without talking to one another. Discussions are a must,’ Iohannis told the Adevarul Live webcast.He mentioned that he and the Premier have work-related, not political discussions.
‘There are some concrete things that need to be discussed when they are hot, I must be informed about what happens. There are no political discussions, they are discussions between the President and the Prime Minister, the way it’s done in all countries and nobody finds there is anything sensational in it. This is a shift of paradigm. I want us to get into normalcy in this regard too (…),’ Iohannis added.
He also mentioned that he and the Premier have diverging opinions on quite many subjects.
‘I have never agreed with normative acts dedicated to just one person’
President Klaus Iohannis on Wednesday stated, while referring to an emergency ordinance on the giving up of one’s academic titles, that there would be much to discuss in relation to the matter and also that he has never agreed with the adoption of a normative act while having just one person in mind.
‘About the ordinance there would be a lot to discuss. I have never agreed, though, with the adoption of normative acts dedicated to just one person,’ he told the Adevarul Live private broadcaster.
Asked if he intends to promulgate the ordinance, he said that he will have to analyse it first, as soon as it gets to his table, and then decide.
‘It is not the President’s job to send his opinions to the Prime Minister. It is not the President’s job to comment upon ordinances, unless they are already on his table for promulgation,’ Iohannis added.
He also said that the head of state is not supposed to comment upon just anything.
‘Definitely, I will not keep giving my replies to the media, for it is not the President’s job to comment upon everything that happens in the country or on television. This doesn’t mean, however, that the President shouldn’t have his own opinion. He must have his opinion, but then again, the President should have the courage to not comment upon absolutely everything. He doesn’t have to be an analyst or a political commentator. The President should comment upon the things that really matter, he must send his messages of encouragement that would make people wish to solve things, instead of just searching for fun,’ said President Iohannis.
He also specified that the head of the state must have a very firm attitude when the situation requires it.
‘I don’t think we should sanction politicians attacking justice independence; CSM should react’
Iohannis stated that, in his opinion, there shouldn’t be any sanctions for politicians attacking independence of justice, but the Supreme Council of the Magistrates (CSM) should react instead.
‘I don’t believe that we should have sanctions for these politicians. What I believe is that we need to have a political class to be mature enough so that each and every politician should have the legitimate interest not to make such statements, while knowing that they could be harmful to him/her. However, in order for this to happen, we need to make the electorate aware first. I don’t believe that we need to go as far as to say that, if someone attacked the independence of justice, we need to remove him/her from office. Only CSM should react immediately and apply sanctions when such statements are made,’ Iohannis told Adevarul Live private broadcaster.
He also said that such cases existed including during the electoral campaign and the CSM stepped in and applied sanctions.
Head of state to meet all the Romanian ambassadors abroad in end-January
On this occasion, President Iohannis also announced that in end-January he is going to have a meeting with all the Romanian ambassadors abroad, to discuss with them the major lines they should follow in terms of foreign policy.
‘This meeting in the beginning of the new year is customary. The President invites all ambassadors to a reception and holds a speech emphasizing on the major lines in foreign policy. This meeting takes place in early January. There are a few very clear matters that I intend to discuss. I will tell them that I have no intention to change Romania’s foreign policy, on the contrary, we have the three pillars, the strategic partnership with the United States, the alliance with NATO and the EU membership. We have these three pillars already consolidated, so that Romania only needs now to prove that it is a serious and credible partner in the long-run,’ Iohannis told Adevarul Live Private broadcaster.
He added that, besides the general lines, he will also send some specific messages, for ‘everytime when there is a meeting, each guest expects the host to address him/her a word in particular too.’