President Klaus Iohannis said Tuesday that he will not appoint any criminally investigated or criminally convicted persons to the office of Prime Minister after this autumn’s general election.
“There is no way I would appoint someone who is criminally investigated, criminally convicted or has personal integrity or related issues. The political class must get reformed. We must have clean politicians and that will be a yardstick. I, Romania’s President, will not appoint any criminally investigated or criminally convicted person, irrespective of who might recommend him or her,” Iohannis said at the Cotroceni Presidential Palace.
He said he will appoint people to public offices by taking into account his constitutional prerogative as Head of State.
“That means I will nominate people who I believe will muster a majority in Parliament and are competent to head the Romanian Government. It would be absurd for me to appoint someone who fails to muster a majority. I am no advocate of such political games. I am not going to nominate or appoint someone only for that someone to be rejected by Parliament, perhaps twice. You will not see me play such games,” said Iohannis.
He pointed out that the appointment of the next Prime Minister will be a very serious action.
“I will keep in mind that the designee is a person I believe is able to head the Romanian Government and muster a parliamentary majority. These are obvious things that I want clarified from the very beginning,” he said.
President Iohannis also said that professionalism criteria will also matter when appointing the Prime Minister.
PSD’s Dragnea: Klaus Iohannis seriously breaking Constitution
The Social Democratic Party (PSD) President has stated that President Klaus Iohannis is “seriously” breaking the Constitution when stating whom he would appoint or not appoint for the office of Prime Minister after the elections. Likewise, Liviu Dragnea stated that he does not take the Head of State seriously and there is no way for PSD and ALDE to accept a Government headed by Dacian Ciolos after December 11.
“I wish him good luck in breaking the Constitution. He confirms he is doing what PNL’s Madam President is telling him to do. To say whom would you appoint in office or not, or whom you would not suspend, seriously breaks the Constitution. I believe this will increasingly suspend the relationship he has with the Romanians he keeps calling on. I understand the President wants this technocrat Government to continue, a Government I see is trying to sell stakes in strategic companies.”
“This is what the Romanian President should be preoccupied with. Why is the Government keeping the price of pharmaceutical drugs up. I’m not taking him too seriously. PSD will bear in mind what Romanians are saying and this is what Mr. Iohannis should take into account too. I saw he kept a wise silence until now, now he has decided to talk, basically he is entering the elections campaign. I understood, it’s Iohannis and PNL on one side and PSD on the other, I wish them best of luck. If he is still upset he can sic some bloodhounds on us, we are waiting for them lest they take us for fools,” Liviu Dragnea said.
Likewise, the PSD President stated that the party he leads and its ally ALDE will not accept Dacian Ciolos leading the Government after the elections as technocrat Premier.
Article 85 of the Romanian Constitution reads:
“(1) The President of Romania shall designate a candidate to the office of Prime Minister and appoint the Government on the basis of the vote of confidence of Parliament.
(2) In the event of government reshuffle or vacancy of office, the President shall dismiss and appoint, on the proposal of the Prime Minister, some members of the Government.
(3) If, through the reshuffle proposal, the political structure or composition of the Government is changed, the President of Romania shall only be entitled to exercise the power stipulated under paragraph (2) based on the Parliament’s approval, granted following the proposal of the Prime Minister.”
PSD: “Romanian people’s criteria are not Iohannis’s criteria”
The Social Democratic Party (PSD) has at least eight possible names for the office of Premier, PSD Secretary General Codrin Stefanescu said in reaction to President Klaus Iohannis’s announcement that regardless whom the political parties nominate he will not appoint in office a person who is criminally prosecuted or convicted.
“The President is not the one who sets the criteria based on which the Premier is selected and nominated by a political party, the Romanian people does, at the ballot box. If Romanians vote for PSD and ALDE on December 11, and we nominate the Premier, Mr. Iohannis has to take that into account,” Codrin Stefanescu said in a phone interview with Digi24.
“The Romanian people’s criteria are not Iohannis’s criteria,” the PSD Secretary General added.
“Maybe the Romanian people considers that some of our party members who are investigated or have been sentenced are the victims of an oppressive system inherited from Traian Basescu. Nobody, not even Iohannis, can force on us what the criteria are,” he added.
Codrin Stefanescu also stated that the President knows “PNL won’t end up governing.”
Asked what happens if PSD does not secure a majority to nominate Liviu Dragnea as Premier, Codrin Stefanescu said the party has eight potential nominees.
“We haven’t named any names, those from the Presidential laboratories are merely guessing. That’s precisely why we haven’t named any name. No time for that name to become a target,” he pointed out.
“The President’s statement does not concern us directly. Everyone is now naming some names, Dragnea and Ponta as possible Prime Ministers, and today’s attack directly concerns the two. PSD currently has at least eight viable names for the office of Prime Minister,” Codrin Stefanescu said.
He listed Liviu Dragnea, Victor Ponta, Eugen Teodorovici and Rovana Plumb.
Ex PM Victor Ponta: “The German is plagiarising Basescu”
Ex-Premier Victor Ponta has stated that President Klaus Iohannis is plagiarising ex-President Traian Basescu.
“I’ve heard Basescu saying this kind of thing before. He said a thousand times he wouldn’t appoint me Prime Minister and I believe he appointed me three times. I give Iohannis’s statements the same credence I gave to what Basescu was saying. Seriously now, from what I know we all have to obey the rules of the Constitution, so the laws. If Mr. Iohannis has some Constitution article or some law that says he has to appoint the doorman from Sibiu or the lady that forged his house ownership paperwork, he should do so,” Victor Ponta said.
The ex-Premier said that the President has to respect the Constitution and the laws, “just like we have to.”
“The German, who is not like Basescu, is plagiarising Basescu. Can’t he come up with a different idea? He just plagiarises Basescu with the same tricks,” he added.
Victor Ponta also said that “Mr. Iohannis learned from Basescu to open criminal cases for his opponents. He’s plagiarising him in this sense too. Now Mr. Basescu feels sorry, his turn has come up too. In 2019 Iohannis will be sorry too.”