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November 29, 2021

Tensions in final days of elections campaign

Nicusor Dan and Predoiu trade barbs on Facebook: “Predoiu, desperate to finish on second place”/”Nicusor, my dear, maintain your composure and attack Firea and PSD”



Nicusor Dan, Save Bucharest Union’s (USB) candidate for the Bucharest City Hall, has stated that PNL’s Catalin Predoiu (photo) is “a candidate desperate to finish on second place” and who launches, through middlemen, deceitful attacks against him. In reply, the Liberal told Nicusor Dan to “maintain his composure” and to attack the Social Democrat Party (PSD) and its candidate Gabriela Firea instead.

“I’ve read a deceitful and undignified attack coming from Marian Preda and Sebastian Bodu (the two have accused Nicusor Dan of working in the interest of certain companies in a legal case opened by USB against the University of Bucharest, a case in which he has asked for the demolishing of several Sociology Faculty offices located in the Panduri Centre – editor’s note). I don’t want to engage in assumptions and believe that Catalin Predoiu, a candidate desperate to finish on second place, is in fact behind this deceitful attack. I want to say as clear as possible: I never took money in order for USB to start a legal action. I never took money in order for USB to stop a legal action. Moreover, I never gave up on a lawsuit I started. On Monday I will file a legal action against Preda and Bodu, for calumny,” Nicusor Dan wrote on Facebook.

In reply, Catalin Predoiu posted on Facebook a video message in which he accuses Nicusor Dan of reaching a deal with PSD. “Several minutes ago I read Nicusor Dan’s attack against me. An inexplicable and unfair attack. Nicusor, my dear, maintain your composure and stop attacking me, you have no reasons to do so. If you want to attack someone, attack Firea and PSD. Why don’t you do that?” Predoiu said.

On Monday, PNL is expected to present a new opinion poll meant to show the hierarchy of Bucharest City Hall candidates. Catalin Predoiu had asked his contenders, Nicusor Dan (USB) and Daniel Barbu (ALDE), to endorse a single right-wing candidate against PSD, one whose identity would be determined based on sociological research.

On the other hand, Marian Preda, former President of the Popular Movement Foundation and Chairman of the Bucharest University’s Senate, has already announced he will back the Liberals in the local elections, pointing out he will vote for PNL’s Ovidiu Raetchi, PNL’s candidate for the Bucharest District 5 Mayoralty.


Gabriela Firea sues Cezar Preda over plagiarism accusations levied against her husband


Cezar Preda, Spokesperson of National Liberal Party’s (PNL) Bucharest branch, has stated Gabriela Firea has sued him, asking for EUR 300,000 in damages for quoting “deceitful” journalistic investigations into suspicions that her husband, Florentin Pandele, allegedly plagiarised his Ph.D. thesis.

“I want to inform you that Ms. Gabriela Vranceanu Firea is suing journalists through me. A former colleague of yours, who reached the position of Romanian Senator through popular vote, considers that any journalistic investigation is causing her extraordinary PR damages. If you chose the path of suing me because you don’t want to sue your colleagues, I accept the challenge and we will have a lawsuit,” PNL Bucharest Spokesperson Cezar Preda stated.

Cezar Preda pointed out Gabriela Firea is asking him for EUR 300,000 in damages and she has paid a tax of EUR 3,000, a Senator’s indemnity over several months, in order to sue him.

The Liberal also explained the reasons invoked by PSD’s candidate for the Bucharest City Hall. “Ms. Firea considers that the press statements concerning Mr. Pandele’s Ph.D. plagiarism and the couple’s – because they are a couple, they are married and share their responsibilities – real-estate businesses are an insult to her as Senator and Bucharest City Hall candidate,” Cezar Preda added.

PNL Bucharest’s spokesperson claimed that Firea will lose the lawsuit and he will show up in court with the documents he has, without calling on any journalist as a witness, however the Social Democrat’s attitude shows “how naked” she is.

“This is in fact an attitude that tells Bucharesters, journalists, all people, who Gabriela Vranceanu Firea Pandele is. She will sue left and right, asking for an endless amount of money. By the way, Ms. Firea, you think money are won that easily? Talk to your husband and tell him money are not won that easily. Money are won with difficulty. (…) Ms. Firea will know no limits in suing any Bucharester, any person who is against her, against the way she speaks, she behaves. What could we expect from a person who believes she is solving problems by suing journalists. I personally will go to court and I will not call on any journalist as a witness because I respect you. I will defend myself using the documents I have in my possession. Ms. Firea, you have showed once again how naked you are,” Cezar Preda said.

In this context, Cezar Preda stated that he was sued for calumny before only by former PSD President Adrian Nastase and reminded Firea the statements she made during the presidential elections campaign in 2014. Back then, Firea made controversial statements about the Diaspora and said that childless families “are incomplete.” “The Anti-Discrimination Council should take EUR 300,000 from Gabriela Firea and offer them to childless families,” the Liberal added.

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