Present in Brussels on Friday evening, President Klaus Iohannis qualified the statements he had made three days before about the National Fiscal Administration Agency’s (ANAF) action toward the Intact media group.
Iohannis stated that he very clearly understands the message that Romanians gave to him on Facebook following his statements on the Intact topic, giving assurances that he did not and does not have any intention to defend anyone against the law. The President emphasised his position through a posting on Facebook.
Answering the wave of criticism on social media, the President underscored that he is not close to the Intact media group and gave assurances that he did not change his approach toward the rule of law in Romania and the enforcement of the law. He admitted that his “very succinct” statements probably caused the way his initial statements were interpreted.
“Concern, preoccupation with a statement I made about a possible eviction of a television station has appeared in the Romanian public space. I made that statement on Wednesday, because at that time my assessment was that [ANAF’s] action, as it was conceived, might affect freedom of expression, the freedom of the press. I felt that it had to be pointed out. Subsequently, I found out that this statement of mine, which only sought to warn that the freedom of the press might be affected, was interpreted in many ways, maybe also because of the fact that I was very brief. Because of this, I want to point out several things. It was rumoured that I have allegedly changed my approach, that I am allegedly close to this media group, to this television station, all kinds of speculations were made that I am allegedly less attached to the rule of law. All these speculations have absolutely no real grounds,” the President said.
“I am convinced that Romania is a rule of law state, will remain a rule of law state and I will fight for Romania to remain a rule of law state. It’s obvious and I’ve said countless times that a court decision has to be enforced. There is no kind of debate here. At the same time however, I am firmly convinced that the right to free expression, the right to information and the freedom of the press are among the most valuable things won through the December 1989 Revolution and I believe that whenever there is the possibility that they might be suppressed – not necessarily an intent, sometimes out of a clumsy approach – it has to be pointed out,” Klaus Iohannis added.
“I am not close to this television station, to this media group. Maybe some remember that, on the contrary, during the November-December 2014 campaign, the media campaign that was waged, the emphasis was of a precisely different nature. There is no kind of intent on my part, there never was and there is no reason for there to be, to defend someone against the law. I want the law to be enforced and I hope that with these statements I’ve helped clarify the situation a bit,” the Head of State added.
“In the same context, I want to say I’ve clearly understood the message I received via Facebook,” the President said at the end of his press statement in Brussels, a press statement he made at the end of the EU summit that focused on the United Kingdom.
Since last Wednesday, President Klaus Iohannis has lost over 40,000 fans on his Facebook page, as a form of protest against the statements he made in the ANAF-Antena Group dispute. Klaus Iohannis labelled the final court sentence a… banal administrative reason.
Despite the fact that he qualified his statement on Friday evening in Brussels and subsequently posted the new statements on his Facebook page too, the President continued to lose fans.
Victor Ponta, harsh attack on Iohannis: “Court decisions are enforced only for serfs or also for His Lordship the Landlord?”
Victor Ponta harshly commented on Facebook the double standards used by Klaus Iohannis when talking about the enforcement of court decisions.
Former Premier Ponta is asking the Head of State, on Facebook, to have the same attitude in the case that concerns his house in Sibiu, a house he lost following a final and executory court decision.
“A simple question – What do you think, where will ANAF go early Monday morning – at Antena 3 or at Mr. Klaus Iohannis?
“It is obvious, and I’ve said this countless times – a court decision has to be enforced” – statement made by KLAUS IOHANNIS, 19.02.2016, Brussels.
Mr. Iohannis is talking only about us serfs (as usual), or does that apply to His Lordship the Landlord too?
Well, it’s easy to find out. On Monday, 22.02.2016, 9 a.m., Mr. Iohannis should allow ANAF to enforce the Brasov Court of Appeals’ final and executory decision (dating from November 2015), should evict in 5 days’ time at most the house he obtained through fraud and forgery, and should pay back the EUR 640,000 he illegally collected (including the 2016 rent)!
(And he should say “Danke” that the judiciary has not taken away his house in Miami or the one in Wolfsburg / what course for this country, after Basescu who is still keeping the house illegally obtained in Mihaileanu now comes Iohannis who is keeping the house obtained just as illegally in Sibiu)!” Victor Ponta wrote on Facebook.
Former ANAF President Sebastian Bodu wants Iohannis’ house seized
Former MEP and ANAF President Sebastian Bodu is demanding the enforcement of the decision that the Brasov Court of Appeals took on 12 November 2015. According to the decision, one of the houses owned by President Klaus Iohannis in Sibiu should return to state property and the rents collected “with ill will” should be recovered.
Although several months have passed since that decision was taken, ANAF and the Sibiu City Hall are yet to enforce it, the Head of State continuing to collect a significant sum as rent, RISE Project journalists recently revealed, according to ziare.com.
“I have asked ANAF and the Sibiu City Hall (through recorded delivery post) to enforce the Brasov Court of Appeals decision. (…) I have asked ANAF and the Sibiu City Hall to register the state’s property right in the Registry if Deeds. I point out that the decision that has to be enforced is final and irrevocable, the currently pending appeal for annulment not being liable to suspend its enforcement and not concerning the essence of the litigation.
Likewise, I have asked ANAF and the Sibiu City Hall to retake possession of the house and notify the current tenant to vacate it, considering that the lessee lost its proprietorship (however, I believe that the lessee, a commercial bank, will terminate the lease contract and will voluntarily vacate the building in order to avoid an eviction procedure that entails PR costs),” Sebastian Bodu revealed on Facebook.
Moreover, the former ANAF President also asked the two institutions “to start the procedure of recovering, from the possessors who are not owners, by resorting to distraints and garnishments,” the rents that Klaus Iohannis and the others collected after they became “ill will possessors.” According to RISE Project estimates, the sum concerned totals approximately EUR 640,000.