PSD leaders reunited on Monday in the absence of party leader Victor Ponta, presently recovering in Turkey after the knee surgery he had undergone in order to reach a clear political decision regarding the ballot in the case appointing Mihai Razvan Ungureanu as Head of the Foreign Intelligence Service (SIE).
Mihai Razvan Ungureanu is not accepted by the Social-Democrats. The PSD leaders mentioned that they will either avoid voting in the plenum, or omit to attend the meeting of the reunited plenum altogether.
The political coordinator of PSD Liviu Dragnea declared on Monday, before the meeting of PSD leaders, that Social-Democrats will not vote for Mihai Razvan Ungureanu as commander of the Foreign Intelligence Service and that a supportive vote would be very difficult to explain.
“We cannot vote for Mihai Razvan Ungureanu, it would be very difficult for a PSD member to explain such decision”, Dragnea declared.
Asked what he thought about Mihai Razvan Ungureanu being voted for by UNPR, Vrancea County Council President Marian Oprisan replied: “It is not for the first time, that due to their strategy concerning national interest and national security, UNP announces that they support President Iohannis. Is is a persistent attitude from behalf of UNPR members. UNPR and Oprea are loyal partners who have always kept their promise. We will have to keep governing until 2016. PSD is not in a political crisis; besides our partners, we have major responsibility towards Romania’s citizens, and we provided excellent governing.”
Asked whether he has talked to Victor Ponta, he replied: “Yes, I have. Victor Ponta is perfectly right. Obviously, if I were the Prime Minister, I would have returned at once and I would have risked my leg. Victor Ponta does not want to jeopardize his health and he is right. I care about his foot, too, and I want you to know that I love him from this point of view.
PSD is a big party, the power relies in the sum of local and central leaders. They will continue doing their job just fine without Victor Ponta at this time. He is in a permanent connection with PSD and Government leaders.
The meeting of the PSD Permanent Bureau was headed by Rovana Plumb, who was appointed interim President of PSD, while Victor Ponta has been hospitalized in Turkey, after undergoing the knee surgery.
Plumb: The governing will continue in the present formula and the coalition is functional. I am in permanent contact with Ponta.
The governing will go on in the present formula, as PSD is a powerful party, the Government is stable and the coalition is functional, interim President of PSD Rovana Plumb declared at the meeting of the Permanent Bureau of the party, showing that she was permanently communicating with PSD leader, PM Victor Ponta.
Plumb had headed on Monday, in the absence of PSD President Victor Ponta the meeting of the Permanent Bureau, attended also by UNPR leader, interim PM Gabriel Oprea.
Rovana Plumb started her speech by welcoming the presence of “Mr. General, interim Prime Minister and UNPR President” and outlining that the Government will go on in the present formula, as the political coalition that supports the Government was functional.
“The Social Democrat Party is a united and solid party, a stable party. Also, the Government will continue, as it is a stable Government. We did great things for Romania and Romanians, in all meanings of these words. The coalition is functional”, Plumb added.
She mentioned that the activity in the Parliament continues as usual.
Plumb also mentioned that she keeps permanent contact with Victor Ponta, who is presently in Turkey, where he underwent a knee surgery.
In previous statements, both PSD leader, Prime Minister Victor Ponta, and interim President of the party Rovana Plumb announced that Social-Democrat members of the Parliament will vote against or will not attend the ballot, accusing, among other things, the fact that President Klaus Iohannis did not seek the advice of PSD before nomination.
Mihai Razvan Ungureanu, Prime-Vice-President of PNL was nominated last week by President Klaus Iohannis to the leadership of the Foreign Intelligence Service.
The leaders of the two Chambers of the Parliament were summoned on Monday for the procedure of electing Mihai Razvan Ungureanu, nominated by President Iohannis, as leader of SIE, under the circumstances that PSD and ALDE representatives oppose his appointment and UNPR, PNL and UDMR are supporting it.
PSD MPs will be absent from the vote
The joint MP group of the Social Democratic Party (PSD) on Monday decided to be absent from the vote on the appointment of Mihai-Razvan Ungureanu of the National Liberal Party (PNL) as director of the Foreign Intelligence Service (SIE), PSD acting national leader Rovana Plumb said Monday.
“There was no vote on this decision; it was a decision made by consensus at a meeting of the joint MP groups; we will not support the nomination put forth by the President and will be absent from the vote session,” said Plumb.
As far as the attendance of the PSD MPs in the SIE Committee to hear Mihai-Razvan Ungureanu is concerned, Plumb said they will act according to the internal regulations and be there.
Asked about alleged tensions during the meeting as regards Valeriu Zgonea, Plumb displayed surprise. “There was no trace of tension and I am surprised to hear you asking me this. We are currently at a time when it is normal for us to listen to our colleagues’ opinions, some of whom speak in louder voices, others in smaller ones. There was no tension; it was normal for us to listen to the positions and opinions of all of our colleagues,” said Plumb.
Asked whether or not she will urge PSD’s coalition partners, the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats (ALDE), not to attend the vote session on Tuesday, Plumb said the coalition will discuss social, economic and governmental matters. “As far as the position on the nomination goes, it will not be discussed inside the coalition,” said Plumb.
PSD’s Dragnea on UNPR vote for SIE head: Like it or not, coalition is in this stage
Social Democratic Party (PSD) political coordinator Liviu Dragnea admitted on Monday that, following the announcement made by the National Union for Romania’s Progress (UNPR) that they would vote in favour of President Klaus Iohannis’s nomination to the Romanian Foreign Intelligence Service leadership, the coalition is in a “not so pleasant” situation, but maintained that there is no crisis and things “will adjust” after Prime Minister Victor Ponta returns to Romania.
“In respect to the votes related to governance we are in the coalition, in respect to the votes in Parliament on other matters that are not related to governance, each party is free to vote as it finds best suited. We are now in this situation. The PSD has no other option. We cannot vote for Mihai-Razvan Ungureanu, we are in this stage in the coalition. Of course I don’t like it, no one does, I believe they don’t like it either, but we are in this situation, we shall overcome it, I hope. At least it is good that Parliament goes into recess,” Liviu Dragnea said at the PSD headquarters.
When asked about the coalition functioning, he showed that there will be a discussion when Victor Ponta comes back.
“We shall discuss after Victor Ponta comes back, we shall most likely have a more settled talk, we shall adjust things. I trust Gabriel Oprea. He attended the meeting of the [PSD] Standing Bureau for a short while and reassured us that he will remain a correct partner at rule,” Dragnea explained.
In his opinion, PSD’s pulling out of governing isn’t opportune.
“As long as we hold the majority in Parliament, PSD wants to keep the governance and the Prime Minister. Victor Ponta as Prime Minister. To us, it is really important to continue the good things we have achieved these years,” the Social Democrats’ political coordinator added.
When asked if the UNPR represented a danger for the PSD or the coalition, Liviu Dragnea denied it.
“We are not talking about danger here. A ruling coalition works as long as it has majority. Full stop. There is absolutely no crisis in the PSD or in the coalition. Crisis means fighting on TV,” Dragnea showed.
“PSD is a stabilised party”
The Social Democratic Party is a stabilised party, and there are currently no serious problems facing it, PSD political coordinator Liviu Dragnea said Monday.
Asked about the absence of Prime Minister Victor Ponta from the PSD’s national leader office, Drgnea said that should not be overblown.
“In my opinion, we should not overblow it either. Victor Ponta will be back in the country in some days’ time. As we speak, PSD is a stabilised party; the National Standing Bureau convened today and passed a political decision not to support Mihai Razvan Ungureanu. As we speak, there are no serious problems,” added Dragnea.
Dragnea admitted there is a lack of authority inside the PSD in the absence of national leader Ponta. “There is a lack of authority, because Victor is absent, I have resigned the executive leadership office and last week was quite a delicate time for the party. Yet, the party is more stabilised now,” he said.
He said there is certain nervousness with the local leaders. “There were some days when they were agitated as they would hear all sorts of statements on television, decisions, strange positions, but they have understood that now it is okay,” Dragnea added.
The PSD political coordinator also said that he would not wish on the doubters of Ponta’s state of health, not even on his foes, the health problems having faced Ponta.