The Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies, Liviu Dragnea, stated that, from what he knows, Florian Coldea is a very skilled professional, but the parliamentary committee for the control of the SRI (Romanian Intelligence Service) must call for hearings the director of SRI, Eduard Hellvig, to check the disclosures made in the last period regarding Coldea.
“I do not know many things about Florian Coldea, but, from what I have read, from what I have heard, from what I have discussed with others in the last period, in the last 2-3 years, what I can say about him, from what I know, he is a very skilled professional. I do not know much about Eduard Hellvig’s grip of steel or grip of velvet, but I think he had a very good collaboration relation and work relation with Mr Florian Coldea. I do not know what Mr Coldea will do, whether he will come back on his position or not, there are all sorts of discussions, only they and President Iohannis know, probably. Beyond that, what I think it is not good for the Romanian state is the scandal that was generated on these disclosures. One consequence is the suspension of Mr Coldea, but the scandal itself affects the credibility of the SRI, which is one of the most important pillars for national stability and security. Everyone says that the SRI, as well the SIE [Foreign Intelligence Service], as well the Ministry of Interior and the DGIPI [Directorate General of Information and Internal Protection], as well other structures, must be very well structured and stable, and enjoy the internal and international prestige. The SRI is part of a network of intelligence services with our partners from NATO, and not only very important but the exchange of information should not be affected by this scandal,” Dragnea said on Antena 3 private television broadcaster.
He added that the new Committee for the control of the SRI, which will be formed on Monday in Parliament, must investigate all the things that have been said in the last period about SRI General Florian Coldea.
“A lot has been discussed wether the new SRI Committee must investigate these things. In my opinion, the new SRI Committee must do this thing, must call Mr Hellvig for hearings, I think he also wants this thing because any non-investigation, if I may say so, is not doing anything than expanding this Ministry, this lack of information, lack of knowledge. A hearing and an objective checkup, made very seriously and very professionally is in the benefit of everybody, the institution and Parliament, and public opinion and the state. I think that at the SRI Committee, director Hellvig will have the possibility, in an official and institutional environment, to answer the questions and clarify many things that should be clarified. This is a scandal which should not be closed, in the sense of being swept under the carpet, it must be clarified and move on, the institution is much too important,” the Speaker of Chamber of Deputies mentioned.
Dragnea has specified that there is no agreement so that PNL (National Liberal Party) take the leadership of the Committee for the control of the SIE and the PSD (Social Democratic Party) take the control of the SRI, however the PSD will have four seats out of nine in the SRI Committee.
Forming the committees for the control of SIE and SRI, on the agenda of the joint plenary of Monday
The joint plenary of the Parliament will be convened on Monday, at 16.00, the agenda including, besides forming the Committee for the investigation of the budget rectifications from 2016, also the vote on the composition of the committees for the control of SRI and SIE, stated parliamentary sources for MEDIAFAX on Friday.
Deputies and Senators will vote the composition of the parliamentary committees for the control of the Foreign Intelligence Service (SIE) and the Romanian Intelligence Service (SRI) in the joint plenary, in the context in which the leaderships of the two institutions will have to be heard in the joint committees for preparing the Law on State budget for 2017.
The standing Joint Committee for exercising the parliamentary control on SRI will have nine members, of which one is the Chairman, one is the Deputy Chairman and another one is the Secretary.
According to parliamentary sources, PNL will support Deputies Razvan Prisca and Ionut Stroe in the joint Committee for the control of SRI, but there is a possibility that a seat will belong to the PNL Senators’ group.
PMP will receive only one seat in one of the two committees, and they will decide who they will propose depending on the seat they will receive following the negotiations that will take place on Monday morning.
The special Committee of the Chamber of Deputies and Senate for exercising the parliamentary control on SIE activity will have five members, namely three Deputies and two Senators, who are also members of the Defense Committees.
According to PNL sources, PNL MP Cezar Preda will be proposed for the presidency of the Committee for the control of SIE.
According to the weight of the seats obtained into the Parliament, PSD will have the largest number of members in the two parliamentary committees.
Sources from UDMR stated on Friday for MEDIAFAX that the party will decide whom it will propose after the discussions that will take place on Monday morning.
IPP requests Parliament to exercise its legal role regarding SRI’s organization and functioning. The investigation of the SRI’s operative chief Florian Coldea must be carried on not by his subordinates, but by superiors
The Institute for Public Policies (IPP) requests Parliament to responsibly exercise its legal role regarding the organization and functioning of the Romanian Intelligence Service (SRI), as well as to adopt a new law of the SRI.
“Following the serious irregularities discovered within the main intelligence service in Romania, the IPP is requesting the two Chambers of Parliament to responsibly exercise their legal role stipulated by the Law No.14/1992 regarding the organization and functioning of the SRI. According to the Article 1 from the Law No.14/1992, in order to exercise concrete and permanent control, a joint committee of the two Chambers is to be constituted. In regards to the current irregularities known in the public space, the checks of the SRI’s operative chief Florian Coldea cannot be carried out by the current subordinates, like it was previously announced. This control must be carried out according to the law and common sense not by the subordinates, but by the superiors,” a release issued by Deputy Director of the IPP Adrian Moraru on Friday reveals.
According to the quoted source, the IPP requests Parliament to adopt a new law of the SRI, so that the events, like the one in the past days in which Deputy Director of the SRI Florian Coldea placed at SRI’s Chief disposal after the charges of corruption/ suspicion of having relations with investigated persons, not to happen again.
“The parties should treat more responsibly the appointment of their representatives in parliamentary control committees, the reconfirmation of some members and presidents who had these positions in the period 2004 – 2006 going to be reconsidered, taking into account the “parliamentary control” carried out so far. In the beginning of a new Parliament tenure, the legislature forum has the chance to prove that it is truly exercising its role to verify institutions, such as the SRI, especially during this special moments to its credibility, like the one in the present, which involves the SRI’s Deputy. The new Parliament can use its authority or can waste this moment, affecting both the credibility of the service, as well as Parliament’s credibility,” Moraru underlines.