Social Democratic Party (PSD) President Liviu Dragnea showed up at the National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA) on Monday morning in order to be heard in the case in which he is investigated for instigating malfeasance in office and forgery, a case in which his ex-wife Bombonica Prodana is also under investigation.
Liviu Dragnea was informed on Monday morning that the criminal probe has started in the case in which he is investigated alongside his ex-wife. After the hearings, the PSD President pointed out that “it’s beautiful stage management, right on President Iohannis’s birthday.”
Dragnea had to wait several minutes outside the National Anticorruption Directorate, since a queue had formed at the metal detector.
“Just like we used to stay at bread queues in the past, now we’re queueing outside the DNA. It’s beautiful stage management, right on President Iohannis’s birthday. It’s a nice gift. The criminal probe started right on Monday, June 6. Of course it’s a coincidence, it has absolutely nothing to do with the result of the elections. My only pain and anger is that my wife is dragged in this case too. She is the mother of my children. (…) The fight against real corruption has to permanently exist. And the horrible crimes I’m being summoned here for, two employees who were not showing up for work too much, should result in life imprisonment,” Liviu Dragnea stated after the hearings.
Asked whether this case will affect him, bearing in mind the two years in jail suspended sentence he previously received, the PSD President pointed out: “From what I understood only if I commit another crime after that conviction, but the level of fear has been surpassed. After so many difficult years for me and my family, in order to pay for a referendum that kept Basescu [in office], I moved on. I’m moving on, I have all chances to remain free until the parliamentary elections, I want us to win the elections. They have to see whether they prefer handcuffs instead of bread, Romanians decide. It’s not a fight against the judiciary, it’s a fight for truth and well-being.”
The PSD President pointed out he did not call Klaus Iohannis in order to wish him happy birthday, since he did it in front of the cameras: “I haven’t called him. I’m not calling him to tell him he should resign because he has problems with his house.”
Prior to that, the PSD President made no comments when he arrived at the DNA, pointing out solely that his presence at the DNA headquarters is “a gift for someone.”
Liviu Dragnea is being criminally probed for:
- Instigating malfeasance in office if the civil servant obtained undue benefits for himself or for another person, continued offence
- Instigating forgery, continued offence
DNA prosecutors accuse him that from July 2006 to December 2012, in his capacity as Chairman of the Teleorman County Council and head of a political party’s county branch, he deliberately determined defendant Alesu Floarea, executive director of the Teleorman County’s Social Security and Child Protection Directorate, to infringe on her official duties by keeping two persons employed within the institution she managed.
The two persons concerned were in fact working at the headquarters of the political party branch whose president was suspect Dragnea Nicolae Liviu, an aspect he was aware of.
This criminal conduct gave the persons concerned undue benefits, namely salaries (RON 91,362) and length of service, DNA prosecutors claim.
The fact that Liviu Dragnea was subpoenaed may be related to a possible change in the legal classification, judicial sources told Agerpres.
“We are considering snap elections”
A censure motion definitely entails snap elections and the Social Democrats are assessing this, PSD President Liviu Dragnea stated on Sunday evening on RTV.
“A censure motion definitely entails snap elections and we are now assessing it in order to see whether triggering snap elections, which might happen in October, would still help us in any way. I mean reducing the government’s tenure by one month, while having a caretaker government, I don’t know whether that’s very good. We are talking realistically. (…) Do we have the certainty that if we topple these technocrats a worse option won’t follow? Because we are not the ones nominating the Prime Minister and we are not coming after some elections to be able to say at Cotroceni – this is the majority, this is the person we nominate and endorse,” Dragnea said on Romania TV on Sunday evening.
He argued that he has absolutely no guarantee that if PSD topples the Government President Klaus Iohannis will nominate the Prime Minister proposed by Social Democrats “in order to accept a responsible political Government and to stop what is bad and to get things going.”
“The only thing we can do – and this is what we are analysing these days – is to trigger snap elections. It’s the only option possible considering the real context in the country. So, I am certain that if we topple the Government and go at Cotroceni with a proposal we will end up having snap elections, because he will propose some names that we will reject and we will end up having snap elections. Now, these days, we are assessing whether this option risks destabilising Romania, because the most important thing for us, those who have to decide this, is for Romania not to enter instability. If that happens we all stand to lose and then nobody will come on television and tell me we did well, everyone will throw stones at us. But that’s not important, what’s important is not to launch the country in an adventure. This is what we are doing, but I can’t go on saying every day why we are thinking about it – and we are seriously thinking about it. It would be easy for me too to say, just like others, “we want a censure motion,” but it has to happen the moment you said it. From that moment on we would set off on an adventure that would no longer be under our control basically. What President Iohannis proposes will not be accepted by us because if we take this road it means we invalidate what he had proposed. If he nominates Dacian Ciolos again, which is very much possible, if he nominates another famous, extraordinary technocrat, we would reject that,” the PSD President added.