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April 11, 2021

Romania’s Constitution Day: President Iohannis urges Constitution watchdogs to live up to their part in democracy

President Klaus Iohannis on Tuesday, December 8, issued a message on the occasion of Constitution Day in which he urges the Constitution watchdogs to always live up to their part in a democracy.

“On this day, I am urging the organisations in charge with overseeing the respect of the spirit and letter of the Constitution to always live up to their fundamental role in a democracy,” Iohannis says in his message.

He also says that this Tuesday marks the 24th anniversary of the December 8, 1991 referendum that by an overwhelming majority passed Romania’s Constitution, a moment that marked the unequivocal choice of the Romanian Government and people for a democratic ruling system.

“The major changes generated by the new constitution have made possible the development of a democracy based on the rule of law and adherence to law. At the same time, democratic values of modern constitutionalism have been consolidated, buttressed by three pillars: protection of fundamental rights and freedoms; diminished temptation for organisational authoritarianism; and boosting decision-making transparency in the public bodies. Almost a quarter of century later, we are witnessing the deepening of a new stage in which the society is increasingly more active and interested in efficient governing and the smooth operation of the local and central powers. The amplification of the participatory dimension of democracy in Romania benefits the fair representation of the citizens by the fundamental state organisations,” said Iohannis.

In his opinion, the Constitution is more than just a fundamental law, it is “a binder that unites citizens around shared values and aspirations.”

“The Constitution provides meaning to political communion, while setting the limits for the exercise of the state powers, while also guaranteeing the rights and freedoms enjoyed by the citizens. There is no functioning democracy in the absence of shared, accepted and respected values promoted by the members of the society. Last but not least, the Constitution enshrines Romania’s belongingness to the European and Euro-Atlantic areas. This way, the guarantee of the normal development of the Romanian society along the group of consolidated democracies against any form of totalitarianism is enshrined,” says Iohannis.

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