The electoral campaign for the June 5 local elections will start on Friday, with 12 candidates left in the race for the Bucharest City Hall. After the one-round mayoral elections end, Bucharest will have a new mayor after 7 years in which Sorin Oprescu held the office, since none of the former Bucharest mayors is running for a new stint.
Nine O’Clock hereby presents the 12 candidates.
Social-Democrat Senator Gabriela Firea is PSD’s candidate for the Bucharest City Hall, after PSD backed, more or less officially, independent candidate Sorin Oprescu in the previous two elections. Gabriela Firea (43) is married to Florentin Pandele, the mayor of Voluntary, Ilfov County’s largest city. Because of this, Pandele, elected mayor as PSD candidate, announced that he will run for a new stint in office but this time as an independent candidate.
Catalin Predoiu (PNL), former Justice Minister, has eventually remained PNL’s final candidate for the Bucharest City Hall, after three previous failed nominations – Cristian Busoi, Ludovic Orban and Marian Munteanu. Catalin Predoiu (47), former Foreign Minister and acting Prime Minister for 3 days in February 2012, is still considered PNL’s option for the office of Prime Minister provided the party wins the parliamentary elections in the autumn.
Nicusor Dan (Save Bucharest Union – USB) is a civic activist and mathematician. He ran for the Bucharest City Hall in 2012 too, as an independent, and managed to win 8.5 percent of the votes, finishing 4th, just one percent behind the 3rd place. The 46-year-old has been president of USB for almost a year.
Robert Turcescu (PMP) is a former journalist and TV anchor with a journalistic career spanning over 20 years. Born in Pitesti, Robert Turcescu (41) gave up his television career in the autumn of 2014, after he announced on B1TV, during a live broadcast, that he allegedly was an undercover intelligence officer, an assertion left unproven. He is backed by ex-president Traian Basescu, the leader of PMP.
Daniel Barbu (ALDE) is a former Culture Minister who stepped down in the midst of a scandal in December 2013. He is currently president of the ALDE Bucharest party branch. Daniel Barbu (59) has been member of the Senate since 2012, having been elected on the lists of PNL, a party he left in September 2014.
Adrian Severin (Social Justice Party – PDS) is a former Foreign Minister, MEP and PSD member. Severin is the candidate of PDS, Marian Vanghelie’s party. Vanghelie is running for a new stint at the Bucharest District 5 Mayoralty despite having legal problems. Severin has a “blemished” past too. On February 23, he was convicted to three years and three months in jail, executory sentence, for passive bribery and influence peddling, offences committed while he was MEP. The sentence is not final.
Bogdan Diaconu (United Romania Party – PRU) is a member of the Lower Chamber, having been elected on PSD’s lists in 2012. He left the Social Democrat Party in 2014. Diaconu (36) is the president of PRU, a party he set up after he left PSD, and is known for his anti-Hungarian and anti-immigration positions.
Mirel Mircea Amaritei (Prodemo), a lawyer by trade, is president of the Prodemo Party and its candidate for the Bucharest City Hall. He scored 0.08 percent in voter preferences, namely less than 8,000 votes.
Iulia Gorea-Costin (PNTCD). The 58-year-old is a politician and diplomat from the Republic of Moldova. Twenty years ago, she ran for president in the Republic of Moldova and finished 8th out of 9 candidates, with less than 10,000 votes. She was mayor and Moldova’s ambassador to the European Council.
Catalin-Ioan Berenghi (independent) is known for being a former Foreign Legion serviceman and for erecting numerous crosses in Bucharest, including on the plot of land on which a mosque will be built, actions meant to be a protest against that state-endorsed initiative.
Petrica Dima (Romanian Socialist Party – PSR). The 50-year-old is a retired colonel and former head of the Bucharest Historic Centre Police. In 2008, he ran for the Bucharest District 3 Mayoralty, winning 0.26 percent of the votes. Likewise, in 2012 he ran for the Bucharest City Hall.
Niculae Neamtu (Romanian Republic Party – PRR) is the president of PRR. The 51-year-old declares himself a Liberal. He graduated the Law Faculty, being a lawyer and arbitrator by trade.