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September 30, 2020

CVM, subject of dispute among Romanian MEPs

PMP MEP Siegfried Muresan (photo) commented, Tuesday night, on the hearing by the Committee on Budgetary Control of the European Parliament of Justice Minister Robert Cazanciuc and DNA Chief-Prosecutor Laura Codruta Kovesi. He criticised the comments made by PSD MEPs.

‘PSD is the party that continues to attack the rule of law. The PSD MEPs have proved that again today, through their positions during the CVM hearing currently taking place in the European Parliament. This is the party that, for the last 25 years, has been trying to entrap Romania and keep it still. For how long are we still going to accept this?’ the MEP noted.

‘Great joy for the enemies of the rule of law that they will get rid of the CVM within five years. No, no, no! The CVM must stay until we have fulfilled all our commitments and the independence of justice is irreversible!’ Muresan added.

MEP Cristian Preda brought tough criticism against Justice Minister Robert Cazanciuc, who, he said, spoke ‘like a Communist politruk’. Preda, on the other hand, noted that the honour of the country was saved by Codruta Kovesi. ‘During the EP hearing on the CVM, Minister Cazanciuc spoke like a Communist politruk, saying that <justice reform is over and the next step is the consolidation of development>. The honour of the country was saved by Codruta Kovesi who explains how the network made up of politicians, businessmen and civil servants acting to rob public money is being dismantled’, Cristian Preda states on Facebook.

During the hearing, the Social-Democratic MEPs raised the subject of introducing a CVM for all member states and noted that the mechanism had been often politically used. Marian-Jean Marinescu said the results of the CVM were obvious in the reform of the judicial system in Romania and that its continuation or cease should be decided upon in Romania. Doru Claudian Frunzulica said the CVM ‘should apply to all member states of the EU, as other member states have the same situation regarding corruption and independence of the judiciary’. Marian-Jean Marinescu said Romania had been fit for joining the Schengen Area since fours years before and that the Commission should convince the member states not to tie Schengen to the CVM.

During the hearing on Tuesday, Justice Minister Robert Cazanciuc advocated the lifting of the CVM, suggesting that things in the area were on normal track, that institutions functioned and that Romania had seen its cooperation with Brussels during the last eight years as a partnership.

The Cooperation and Verification Mechanism reviewing the progress made after accession in the area of judicial system reform and anti-corruption and organised crime efforts was introduced by the European Commission in 2007. The mechanism was based on the commitment of the two countries at the time of accession.

Several Romanian politicians, including President Klaus Iohannis have been saying lately that the CVM ought to be lifted. However, a Eurobarometer published on 27 January shows that 73% of Romanians want the CVM to go on until their country reaches ‘standards compatible with those in other member states’.


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