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February 9, 2023

Oana Schmidt Haineala on the lifting of CVM: Efforts of judicial system should be backed by strong political will

Oana Schmidt Haineala, member and ex-President of the Superior  Council of Magistracy (CSM), states in an interview granted to Ziare.com that the lifting of CVM would only be brought up when we demonstrate there is no danger that the progress made in a field may be jeopardised in a different field. She also commented on the famous case of ex-DIICOT Chief-Prosecutor Alina Bica.


‘Ambitious objective’


In what regards the CVM, the former CSM president said that a possible lifting of the arrangement would only be considered ‘when we demonstrate there is no danger that the progress made in a field may be jeopardised in a different field, in other words, when we convince our European partners what we build on one side we don’t demolish on other side.’ On the probability of such thing happening in the next two years, Oana Haineala said it was ‘an ambitious objective which requires no step be taken back and the efforts of the judicial system are backed by a strong political will.

Regarding the case of Ex-DIICOT Chief-Prosecutor Alina Bica, currently under arrest, and the procedure for the monitoring of the work of chief-prosecutors, the former CSM president said she had voted for a negative opinion. ‘I believe it is the responsibility of everyone engaged in the <chain> of appointments of prosecutor’s office heads to evaluate with extreme care the considered candidates, their psychological profile, their professional background and take responsibility for their decision as well as possible consequences’, Haineala said. She added that ‘as noted in the latest European Commission report, the strong political connotation of appointments to office has not been beneficial’.


Big Brother’ and pre-paid card law, a necessity


Answering a question about the proposal made by judge Horatius Dumbrava, member of CSM, that people who hurt the independence of justice should be suspended from office, Haineala said sanctions must be enforced, but within the boundaries set by the law. ‘I think it is necessary to have sanctions provided by the ethical and deontological code of the members of Parliament, should they have any such derailments’, the ex-CSM chief said. ‘It is important to know that, currently, on GRECO (Group of States against Corruption – Council of Europe) there is a forth round of evaluations of the states that are member of the Council of Europe, looking at corruption in the parliamentary environment, but also among judges and prosecutors. Constantly, states that do not have a Code of Conduct for the members of Parliament receive from GRECO the recommendation to adopt such a code with clear rules. Of course, the rule must be reinforced by sanctions in order to be effective, but that is left to the discretion of law-makers’, Haineala added.

About the much debated ‘Big Brother’ and pre-paid card law, Oana Haineala thinks such necessary laws should have been sorted already last autumn. ‘In my opinion, those laws should have been dealt with already after the CCR rulings had been published, I mean in the autumn. It is necessary to have laws in that field in order to prevent and combat serious offences such as corruption, terrorism, organised crime, but also other types of offences such as those against life – laws that give access to certain data under court control, laws that should be in line with the Constitution and international norms’, said the former president of CSM.


CSM analysis close relationship of Alina Bica and Elena Udrea


The Judicial Inspection has found that ex-DIICOT chief Alina Bica violated deontological rules by travelling to Paris with the President of PMP, Elena Udrea. The case is already on the table of the Superior  Council of Magistracy. The Prosecutors Department will decide on  the sanctions that might be taken against the former chief-prosecutor of DIICOT.

In the meantime, CSM needs to know Bica’s position in the matter. She might be heard at a date yet to be decided.


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