Ex-Premier Victor Ponta announced on Wednesday that he will resign from the Social Democratic Party (PSD) and will send an undated resignation letter to party president Liviu Dragnea, stating he cannot remain silent “about things” he knows and watches “with concern.” Following the ex-Premier’s announcement, Liviu Dragnea stated he will not activate the resignation and hopes Ponta would get over his anger.
“If I inconvenience, because I’ve seen I’m inconveniencing, starting today I’ll send Mr Dragnea – you know I don’t want anyone to kick me out of the party – I’ll send him my undated resignation and when I’m angering him very much he will file it and will get rid of me. But I won’t shut up, I can no longer, at my age, shut up about things I’ve seen, things I know and I am watching with concern,” Victor Ponta stated.
His announcement follows the observations that Ponta made on the manner the PSD is being led, observations that prompted Liviu Dragnea to say that “any criticism levelled by Victor Ponta is pure health.”
Victor Ponta pointed out he will continue to support the Grindeanu Government and will encourage people to vote for PSD.
The ex-Premier also stated he did not conspire against the PSD President, his last phone conversation with Liviu Dragnea taking place last December.
“I have no conspiracy in mind and I was amused reading the stories that Liviu likes very much. My last phone conversation with Mr Dragnea was in December, when he called to ask me whether it’s true I’m meeting Teodorovici and Banicioiu at night, to conspire. I hanged up on him. I filmed myself – I was some 3,000 km away, on a golf course – and I sent him the recording. I told him: “stop listening to all the crazies.” The same goes for the current conspiracy too. I have no conspiracy,” the ex-Premier added.
Ponta claimed he wants to speak his mind. “One thing: I want to say what I believe, and I’m the happiest when I’m not right. Meaning, if we will be strong in Europe. I’m not saying we won’t matter. If the economy works and the salaries grow I’ll be the happiest because I want to live in Romania,” he added.
Asked to comment on Liviu Dragnea’s statements according to which the two are talking, Victor Ponta said: “Telepathically, I believe.”
“There are some things I’m seeing and I’m saying with all the good intentions. If someone is inconvenienced by this, I’ll remain an independent and I’ll ask you to stop minding me, to no longer broadcast what I’m saying. If Mr Dragnea wants to use my resignation…,” the Social Democrat added.
Likewise, when asked whether other colleagues of his will leave PSD, Ponta said: “No, I want them all to remain.”
Former prosecutor, secretary of state, minister and prime minister, Victor Ponta – whom Adrian Nastase called “a young Titulescu” – joined PSD in 2001. In November 2002, he was elected President of the Social Democratic Youth branch, an office he held until November 2006. A month later, Ponta became PSD Vice President, an office he kept until February 2010, when he was elected party president.
Victor Ponta resigned from the office of PSD President in July 2015, after he was indicted for forgery in deeds by private signature and complicity to tax evasion and money laundering in the “Turceni-Rovinari” case, guilty acts he allegedly committed while he was a lawyer.
Ponta announced his decision to “no longer hold any leadership office” within PSD through a letter addressed to Social Democrat leaders and posted on Facebook. “I’m a PSD member since 2002 and I’m convinced my whole political life will take place solely by the side of this party and the values it represents. I want to thank you and all PSD members once more for the supreme honour you bestowed upon me on 20 February 2010, when you elected me as your leader. Although the times were horribly difficult for the party and the country, we managed in over 5 years of political battles to meet most of the expectations of the Romanians who voted for us. You were always by my side, and our solidarity as PSD’s leadership team was a determining factor,” Ponta wrote in the letter addressed to his PSD colleagues.
Victor Ponta is currently at his four stint as member of the Lower Chamber.
Dragnea: If Ponta sends me an undated resignation I won’t activate it. I hope he gets over his anger
PSD President Liviu Dragnea stated that if Victor Ponta sends him an undated resignation he will not activate it, adding he hopes Ponta would get over his anger. He also said he does not know why Ponta is upset and is trying to find out.
“If he sends an undated resignation I won’t activate it. (…) I do not conceive of a former party president receiving a treatment identical to the one Mircea Geoana received,” Dragnea said after the ex-Premier’s announcement.
The PSD leader also claimed he lately “communicated” with and even met Ponta.
“We have talked lately. We have communicated, we have met too. I hope he gets over his anger, I’m trying to understand why he’s angry. I don’t know, I’m trying to find out,” Dragnea said.
He added that Ponta “can work in the party and can support the party, just like we all do.”
PSD Vice President: If he wants to leave the party, Ponta should resign from Parliament too
PSD Vice President and Senator Paul Stanescu stated on Wednesday for MEDIAFAX that if Ponta wants to leave the party it would be best for him to give up his Lower Chamber seat too. He made the statement after the former PSD leader announced he will send an undated resignation to Liviu Dragnea.
Paul Stanescu stated Ponta should conform to the conditions he himself was demanding on others back when he was PSD President.
“If he wants to leave the party, it would be best for Victor Ponta to resign from Parliament, from his position as member of the Lower Chamber. In the party, he is a simple member and I don’t know how much it matters if he resigns. Back when he was [party] president, he too was asking others for such resignations. It would be good for him to conform to those requirements he had back when he was at the party’s helm and to resign from the position he holds in Parliament,” Paul Stanescu said.
Other PSD leaders also reacted to the ex-Premier’s announcement.
PSD Hunedoara President Laurentiu Nistor stated for MEDIAFAX on Wednesday that Victor Ponta’s decision is “a unilateral act” that any party member can afford to make, however he does not believe the goal of this decision is the setting up of a parallel group within PSD.
“Any party member has the right to resign. I understand it’s an undated resignation, I don’t understand when it will take place. It’s his own decision. I don’t believe there’s a risk for any parliamentarian to follow him, just as I don’t believe Victor Ponta wants to form some parallel group within PSD,” Nistor pointed out.
PSD Bistrita-Nasaud President Emil Radu Moldovan, who is close to Victor Ponta, stated for MEDIAFAX that Ponta leaving PSD would be a loss and he hopes Victor Ponta will have the wisdom to understand that his future and PSD’s future are the same.
“I was and remain close to Victor Ponta. Him leaving PSD would be a great loss for the party. I wish Victor Ponta would have the wisdom to understand that his place is within PSD, that jointly we’ve done many good things for the country and that the future is a joint one – PSD’s and Victor Ponta’s,” Emil Radu Moldova, president of PSD’s Bistrita-Nasaud branch, stated.
Ponta: “I haven’t ratted on anyone in my life, I am not undercover witness in any case”
Former Social-Democrat Prime Minister Victor Ponta declared on Wednesday that never in his life has he denounced anyone, nor he is an undercover witness in any case.
“When I saw the secret police-like (Securitate) lies and manipulations with Ponta denouncing Tariceanu … I couldn’t have ratted on him because I did not know anything illegal in what Mr. Tariceanu did. And I spoke to him. I was so amazed at the proposal because I am not feeling in any danger and neither do I belong to informers some prosecutors love so much. I have denounced anyone in my life, I am not an undercover witness in any case, everything I say I have the courage to back it and I don’t like rats,” stated Victor Ponta in Parliament.