President Klaus Iohannis is very pleased with the activity of Prosecutor General Augustin Lazar and of National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA) Chief Prosecutor Laura Codruta Kovesi, sources from the Presidential Administration told News.ro on Tuesday. The statements came against the backdrop in which Justice Minister Tudorel Toader said he will talk separately with the Prosecutor General and the DNA Chief Prosecutor about the probe into government emergency ordinance no.13 (OUG 13), being of the opinion that the probe broke the law and suggesting that he does not rule out that the two officials might resign until then.
“President Klaus Iohannis is very pleased with the activity of the Prosecutor General and of the DNA Chief Prosecutor,” Presidential Administration sources told News.ro.
Justice Minister Tudorel Toader stated for Antena3 private television broadcaster on Sunday that he will have separate talks with Prosecutor General Augustin Lazar and DNA Chief Prosecutor Laura Codruta Kovesi about the probe that is being carried out into government emergency ordinance no.13, being of the opinion that the probe broke the law, as shown by the Constitutional Court ruling, and suggesting that he does not rule the possibility that the two might resign until then.
On Monday, Justice Minister Tudorel Toader claimed he did not suggest that the Prosecutor General and the DNA Chief Prosecutor should resign but simply evoked an option stipulated by the Labour Code, pointing out that anybody can resign and nobody is forced to work against his/her will. “I didn’t suggest they should resign, I said and I demanded no speculations be made on this topic, and evoked an institution that exists in the Labour Code. Anyone can resign, nobody is forced to work against his or her will.”
Also on Monday, the Justice Ministry pointed out in a press statement that Minister Tudorel Toader has the right and obligation to verify the managerial efficiency and the way Prosecutor General Augustin Lazar and DNA Chief Prosecutor Laura Codruta Kovesi carried out their prerogatives, in line with the law on the organisation of the judiciary. Justice Ministry representatives stated they pointed out this fact bearing in mind the public discussion on the minister’s prerogative to verify the Prosecutor General’s and DNA Chief Prosecutor’s managerial efficiency and manner of fulfilling their prerogatives.
On Monday, Premier Sorin Grindeanu stated that Justice Minister Tudorel Toader is “an extremely balanced” man who has a “free hand” in making things work correctly in this domain and in setting right what he thinks “is not working properly.” “I have great confidence in the minister, he has great experience in this domain, he was member of the Constitutional Court for 10 years, he is an extremely balanced man who will surely take the right decision and he has a free hand in making things work properly in this domain or setting right what he thinks is not working properly. I’m not a specialist, it’s not my job to enter this sector. I have great confidence in the minister,” Sorin Grindeanu stated.
On Monday, Prosecutor General Augustin Lazar stated he will not resign, thus responding to the Justice Minister’s statements: “I’m telling you only this: no. And I don’t want to enter public polemics.”
Likewise, the National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA) pointed out on Monday that the probe into the OUG 13 case was carried out in line with legal provisions and with the jurisprudence of the High Court of Justice, per which the prosecutor has the obligation to carry out an investigation in order to establish the truth, including in situations in which the notification concerns the adoption of acts published in the Official Journal.
The DNA pointed out that the Constitutional Court’s decisions concern constitutional principles that were not analysed before and that could lead to the emergence of different points of view.
The Constitutional Court pointed out in the substantiation of its ruling, which noted the existence of a juridical conflict of a constitutional nature between the Public Ministry and the DNA on one side and the Government on the other side, that the DNA prosecutors’ probe into the adoption of OUG 13 was not part of their prerogatives, since they cannot probe the advisability and legality of a legislative act adopted by the lawmaker.