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June 26, 2022

Is Ponta preparing a Government reshuffle?

According to certain rumours circulated in the last few days, Victor Ponta is preparing a Government reshuffle, and several of the present Ministers will be leaving next week.
Social-Democrats will not withdraw their political support to Victor Ponta after the PSD Congress, but they intend to complete a “small reshuffle”. It is a discontentment inside PSD as Victor Ponta did not seek their advice when appointing Government Ministers.

According to stiripesurse.ro, discussions regarding the Ministers’ activity are ongoing inside PSD and a few Ministers might look forward to a change in their position.
Sources within PSD declared for stiripesurse.ro that Transportation Minister Iulian Matache has the lowest chances to continue his term in the Government after PSD Congress. Instead, a Minister from Oltenia might be imposed, quoted sources say, a Minister imposed by Liviu Dragnea.
PSD also targets Justice Minister Robert Cazanciuc, who gained a lot of antipathy due to his silence concerning heated topics.
According to quoted sources, the reshuffle might also impact an ALDE Minister, as there are discussions regarding Education Minister Sorin Campeanu’s achievements.
There are additional discussions on other Ministers as well, which means that 4 or 5 Ministers may be changed, stiripesurse.ro reports.

According to Government sources, the reshuffle is due immediately after the Congress of the Social Democrat Party (PSD) on Sunday, October 18, Realitatea TV reported. At least four PSD Ministers will leave their Ministerial chairs and they might be replaced by members of the Parliament.
Social-Democrat Senator Daniel Savu declared on this topic that the reshuffle was a “request of the party”. While attending a TV show on Antena 3 on Wednesday evening, Savu revealed two of the possible departures of Government Ministers: “I think Defence Minister Robert Cazanciuc might be replaced. Our colleagues interviewed him at the Senate a few months ago, when the Seized Goods Agency was denied. (…). He is likely to be among the dismissed ones. And there are other Ministers in the Ponta Government that might, for the improvement of the Ponta Government, grant some satisfaction to people leading PSD at the time being and who would lead it even better after the Congress. I am an adept of the reshuffle as well, it would be required in order to strengthen the Government a little bit. (…) I think it would be best for the Ponta Government to change Cazanciuc. We do not understand Cazanciuc, he is sort of a Minister who is a technocrat, but has joined PSD. He would have been better off as a technocrat. (…) A working group was created at the Senate, with the best jurists to come up with a legal package for justice. (…) We should change some of the present stipulations, not intervene brutally, as Basescu did.
Ion Chelaru declared that a group for reforming justice will start functioning from October 28. If Cazanciuc had done it (…) but it did not come from him”.
Asked whether the reshuffle was coming from inside of PSD or whether it was Ponta’s initiative destined to consolidate his image, Daniel Savu declared: “Both. I do not think that anybody wants Ponta’s departure, it would be an act of suicide for PSD. (…) After being elected President on Sunday, Mr. Dragnea declared that the topic of changing Mr. Ponta was unapproachable. (…) Victor Ponta had shocked all of us when he resigned from PSD on Facebook; at that point, he gave up some of his credibility and he has the duty, in order to reconsolidate his position in the party, to fulfill certain expectations we have. (…) I mean a Government reshuffle, not necessarily initiated by PSD. (…) There is discontentment concerning certain Ministers that is noticeable at the PSD Congress.”
Moreover, Daniel Savu revealed that there is also discontentment related to Minister Daniel Constantin’s activity: “Many people are very upset by measures in agriculture, and they found no open door at the Agriculture Minister, it is a discontentment regarding how he treated demands from the territory.”

PSD’s Dragnea: There is no chance of PSD withdrawing political support for PM Ponta

National leader of the Social Democrat Party (PSD) Liviu Dragnea told a televised show on Thursday evening that there is currently no chance of the party withdrawing its political support for Prime Minister Victor Ponta and that reports about governmental reshuffling are mere rumours.

“Besides our friendship that has been going on for many years, Victor Ponta is a good Prime Minister that took the Romanian economy out of recession and led it to constant growth that is even bigger each year. The International Monetary Fund (IMF), an institution known for its prudence, has already upwardly adjusted its estimates of Romania’s economic growth in 2016 and 2016. The Prime Minister weathered the non-confidence vote well, that is the motion of censure was defeated, he was revalidated in Parliament, so there is no chance of PSD withdrawing its political support from Victor Ponta,” Dragnea told Romania TV private television broadcaster.

He pointed out that there is no intention of reshuffling the cabinet now, as the topic is not even discussed inside PSD.

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