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April 15, 2021

Traian Basescu: “There are two ladies who are riding roughshod over politics”

Ex-President Traian Basescu has accused High Court of Justice (ICCJ) President Livia Stanciu and National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA) Chief Prosecutor Laura Codruta Kovesi of taking the liberty of talking too much about politics.

Basescu, who during his tenures as President gave strong support to the DNA and ICCJ, now says that the heads of the two institutions are “riding roughshod over politics.” This is not the first statement of its kind coming from him, the ex-president having launched broadsides against the two on several occasions after he finished his tenure. In a message posted on Facebook on the morning of the local elections day, Traian Basescu accused the DNA, SRI [Romanian Intelligence Service] and the U.S. Ambassador of “taking on the messianic mission of cleaning up the political class.”

PMP President Traian Basescu was discomfited by ICCJ President Livia Stanciu’s statement that the re-election of mayors who have legal problems is not normal. Traian Basescu claimed, in a talk-show, that the head of the ICCJ thus infringed the presumption of innocence enjoyed by those who have not received a final court sentence.

The ex-President said that “the leaders of the judiciary are taking too much liberties,” having not only Livia Stanciu but also DNA Chief Prosecutor Laura Codruta Kovesi in mind. “There are two ladies who are riding roughshod over politics. Whether we are talking about Ms. Codruta Kovesi, whether we are talking about Ms. Stanciu. They have become politicians lately. Still, Ms. Stanciu’s intervention calls for an observation. She does not have the right, if she respects her job, if she respects herself, to ever say that someone’s presumption of innocence should not be respected,” Traian Basescu stated, being quoted by Digi24.

Livia Stanciu had stated on Tuesday, after the Superior Magistracy Council’s meeting: “Such people being elected does not seem something normal to me, even though the presumption of innocence until proven guilty is in force in what concerns them. (…) You know very well what my point of view was in what concerns those who receive suspended sentences with conditional bail. I maintain that point of view.”

In a message posted on Facebook last Sunday, at 7 a.m., Traian Basescu also accused Laura Codruta Kovesi of getting involved in politics. According to the ex-President, SRI and the U.S. Ambassador to Romania are allegedly doing the same thing.

“Three institutions – DNA, SRI and the U.S. Ambassador – have taken on, in 2015 and 2016, the messianic mission of cleaning up the political class by opening criminal files. In recent months, mayors have enjoyed special attention.”

“Many mayors who have criminal files, are indicted, some placed under pre-trial arrest, will run to keep their tenures (Chereches, Vanghelie, Olguta Vasilescu, Florea, Scripcaru, Pendiuc etc.).”

“Today we will understand whether DNA is the solution for removing corrupt politicians from parties or whether the parties themselves have to assume responsibility for their own disinfection. Or maybe today the electorate itself?” Traian Basescu wrote.

President of Romania from 2004 to 2014, Traian Basescu was the biggest supporter of the DNA, an institution he praised countless times and which he placed, alongside ICCJ, at the forefront of the anti-corruption fight, including the fight against the corruption that affects the political class.

“The judiciary’s progress was not necessarily due to the changing of the laws. Progress was made because prosecutors and judges felt they are free, that they are no longer pressured, that politicians are no longer off limits, are no longer convinced that nothing could happen to them,” Traian Basescu stated on 20 December 2014 at his last press opportunity as President of Rom

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