MEP Catalin Ivan asked the leader of the Social Democrat Party (PSD) Liviu Dragnea, in a press conference on Friday, to publicly clarify his situation inside the party, mentioning that the statements according to which he was not a PSD member anymore have “very serious and important” consequences regarding the money allocated by the EP to the group of the Social Democrat MEPs.
“I ask Mr. Dragnea to call me at the party with all the documents. Maybe he is misinformed. Maybe he doesn’t believe the unchecked information. Let’s say that it was an error, a tensed situation. We can find excuses, but what Mr. Liviu Dragnea stated is a serious thing” said MEP Catalin Ivan in a press conference held at Dobrovat on Friday.
Ivan, who mentioned that he’s a member of PSD Dobrovat, an organization in the Iasi county, said that the statements made by Liviu Dragnea, according to which he’s not a party member anymore, could have serious political and financial consequences, and not only, at European level.
“Liviu Dragnea, as the Executive President of the party, who took us in a European adventure with the GEO 13, makes a very serious statement, risking to lead PSD and the Socialist European Party (PES) in a new European scandal. I tell Mr. Dragnea that this simple statement, that I am not a PSD member since 2 years ago, has very serious and important consequences. Mr. Dragnea doesn’t know, because he’s not interested in what happens at European level, but the European Social Democrat group , the PSD group in the European Parliament, is receiving funds from the EU budget on several criteria, but the fundamental criterion is the one of (the number of – e.n.) the members” Catalin Ivan stated, according to Agerpres.
The MEP explained that, according to the EP regulation, a political group receives an amount of money from the budget of the institution, which amount is subsequently broken on each national delegation, and the number of the members is the main criterion of the algorithm for allocating the amounts.
“It is vital for the funds allocated in the EP if PSD has 15 or 14 members in the EP. A simple person more or less means very large amounts of money that came to the PSD delegation or to the European Socialist group in these two years in which I wasn’t allegedly a member. It’s useless to tell you what scandal can occur on embezzlement, given that OLAF, the European Court of Auditors are monitoring every Euro, especially in this times of crisis” MEP Catalin Ivan claimed.
According to him, all the expenses are “strictly” checked by the Budget Control Committee, who’s Chairman he is.
“Corruption is a very serious matter at European level. We’re not playing with such a thing. It’s not the same if the Social Democrat group has a member more or less. It’s not a game. You can’t say ‘now I realized that Ivan is not a member since two years ago’. It’s a childish thing. This is a very serious matter that Mr. Dragnea has to understand. (…) Mr. Dragnea should be asked if he informed the Socialist group in the EP in these two years, that I am not a member since two years. Both PSD and PES received seats in accordance with the number of the members. As the group is larger, (…) more money, more positions, more reports are allocated. Mr. Dragnea should tell us if PSD has undue positions inside EP, if PES has undue positions inside EP, since I am not a member of this group anymore. Mr. Dragnea can play at the county level, at national level, in Teleorman, but we can’t play with such statements at European level” Catalin Ivan added in the press conference.
MEP Catalin Ivan is not a member of the Social Democrat Party anymore, claimed the leaders of the party Liviu Dragnea and Niculae Badalau on Wednesday.
Being asked if Ivan was excluded by the National Executive Committee of Wednesday, PSD’s Liviu Dragnea stated that he is not a member of the Social Democrat Party, being excluded from the Organization of the Sector 1 for a long time ago.
“I’ve explained a very important thing to my colleagues: somebody who’s not a member anymore cannot be excluded from the party. Mr. Catalin Ivan is not a party member for a long time ago. He was excluded by the Sector 1 Organization for a while. So, it’s not the case” Liviu Dragnea stated.
Catalin Ivan stated on Wednesday for Agerpres that he is a member of PSD Dobrovat, which belongs to the Iasi County Organization, and this can be proved with the protocol drawn up at that time.
“My acceptance at Dobrovat, in the PSD Iasi county organization, is based on a protocol. (…) I am a PSD Dobrovat member for more than one year and a half. The whole acceptance process in the PSD Iasi County Organization was finalized when the County Executive Committee took note of my presence in PSD Dobrovat” Catalin Ivan stated.
The MEP also said that there have been discussions at that time on his movement from PSD Dobrovat to PSD Iasi.
“It was a discussion with all the members of the County Executive Committee. There’s also a minute. Probably Mr. Dragnea was misled by the PSD Sector 1 organization, which lost the count on how many times they have excluded me. I will present all the documents to the National Executive Committee” Catalin Ivan also stated on Wednesday.
“Dragnea is so convincing inside PSD because his argument is Shhaideh. This is where the funds for local development are”
MEP Catalin Ivan claims that Liviu Dragnea is so convincing in PSD, including when sanctions are decided, because his argument is related to the funds of the Regional Development Minister, Sevil Shhaideh.
“Dragnea is so convincing because his argument is Sevil Shhaideh. As long as he has the funds for local development, he is very convincing, including when he proposes exclusions” Catalin Ivan stated in a press conference held in the Iasi commune Dobrovat.
Asked if he’s not afraid that he will be sanctioned in PSD for the statements he made, Catalin Ivan said: “Let them exclude me, and I’ll enroll again”.
Catalin Ivan also said that no party member can lose his quality only because the President of the party says so.
“If Mr. Dragnea wishes to sanction me, he has to convene the Executive Committee and to propose my exclusion” Ivan said, according to News.ro.
The PSD MEP also stated that it’s a disaster that PSD fell 15 percent in the polls, following the scandal related to GEO 13.
“It’s a disaster, and it occurred in only two months. There are internal problems, the party goes in a wrong way. The difficult period will stop depending on what the PSD leadership will make”, MEP Catalin Ivan stated.
“ PSD needs Victor Ponta’s experience”
At this moment, PSD needs Victor Ponta’s experience, MEP Catalin Ivan stated on Friday.
Asked whether he has anything to reproach PSD President Liviu Dragnea with, Catalin Ivan replied: “I’ll discuss inside the party.”
“I believe at this moment PSD needs Victor Ponta’s experience and the clear mind of the one who has been through a lot,” Catalin Ivan said, being quoted by Agerpres.
He said that PSD is making a very big mistake by keeping Victor Ponta away from the decision-making process, emphasising at the same time that “the 2012-2015 period was the best period in PSD’s history, with Victor Ponta PSD President and Premier.”
“The 2012-2015 period so far remains the best period in PSD’s history, with Victor Ponta party president and Victor Ponta Prime Minister, and I think we won’t see this situation again very soon. He had the best results both at Government level and at party level. (…) We could have built very much on top of that. On the other hand, we strayed away from the path we had set out on and now, it’s obvious for everyone, we are going in a wrong direction,” Catalin Ivan said.
According to him, the way in which Victor Ponta has been “slowly” pushed away is visible.
“I believe PSD is at this moment feeling the effects of the absence of the experience gained by Victor Ponta, who is feeling the effects of the mistakes he did,” the MEP said.
Ivan emphasised the fact that although he censured Ponta for his mistakes at the time, now he would like to see Victor Ponta “in the decision-making circle, because he is a man who learned very much, including from the mistakes he made at the time, [in] 2014-2015.”
Asked whether an extraordinary party conference is necessary, Ivan stated that “clear talks with party members, with party branch presidents, are called for, in order to analyse why this point has been reached.”
“Of course, the adoption of urgent measures for a return to democracy, resumption of internal dialogue and freedom of speech for party members is needed. I hope these things can happen if we give up on decisions the likes of the one to take note of the fact that I’ve no longer been a PSD member for two years, even though there is evidence including on Mr Dragnea’s Facebook page,” MEP Catalin Ivan stated.