PSD President Liviu Dragnea stated on Wednesday, at the end of the party’s National Executive Committee meeting, that the Social Democrats must seriously ponder whether the pardon law is still “opportune,” thus launching “a final call” on the Government and Justice Minister Tudorel Toader to state, within reasonable time, whether the bill and other measures announced can solve the penitentiaries’ problem.
“Just as I said during the campaign and after the elections, I said it again within the NatExCom plenum – our priority is the implementation of the governing platform as presented during the campaign, not the pardoning of corruption crimes. Today we didn’t talk about sanctions, [about] some punishments [against] the members of the Senate’s Judiciary Committee, but we couldn’t allow such gestures to be endorsed either, because we are interested in what we presented Romanians being applied and in everyone being aware that those objectives are our priority,” Liviu Dragnea stated.
The PSD leader claimed he asked his colleagues to ponder whether the pardon law is still opportune or not.
“Regardless of the arguments brought both at the meeting and in the public space, I raised this issue for my colleagues – in the following period we should serious think whether this pardon law is still opportune. Because, unfortunately, the problems in penitentiaries and the detention conditions in Romania were the starting point in drafting this law and an attempt is possibly being made to solve other problems that the judiciary has and which have been discussed for months, maybe for years in Romania. Indeed, for some time now there has been talk about the abuses of some prosecutors, about some debatable decisions taken by some judges, about influences, pressures exerted by some institutions on a judge, about the necessity to adopt a law on the accountability of magistrates, but with the footnote that this accountability must be clarified but also supplemented by protection for judges in the face of potential pressures or influences,” the Speaker of the Lower Chamber explained.
He added that there is talk about “the imperfections in defining some crimes, about the possibility of diversifying the way punishments are served,” but the pardon law cannot solve all these topics.
“In these conditions, we must seriously ponder whether this law is still opportune. In this context, I continue to launch a final call on the Government, on the Justice Ministry, to present, within reasonable time, whether the pardon law and other measures or proposals they have announced as bills can solve the problem in penitentiaries. This law alone does not solve the problem generated,” Liviu Dragnea added.
Basescu: Thank God Dragnea distanced himself from pardon issue. Romania needs wide-ranging pardon
Popular Movement Party (PMP) President Traian Basescu stated on Wednesday, at the party’s National Executive Committee meeting, that he is satisfied that Liviu Dragnea and the Social Democrats “have distanced themselves from the granting of pardons issue” because this will allow him to support such a law “from an independent position, because Romania needs the granting of wide-ranging pardons.”
“In what concerns me, I thank God that Dragnea distanced himself, along with the whole of PSD, from the granting of pardons issue, because this will allow me to back it from an independent position, because Romania needs the granting of pardons. A position of a politician who understands the situation in our judiciary, in the penitentiary system and especially one who sees fit to contribute to the repairing of some errors made once the new Criminal Code came into force,” Traian Basescu stated.
The PMP leader pointed out that these are not errors for which he takes the blame alone, because the new Criminal Code was written “by a whole panoply of university professors well paid with money from the World Bank.”
“The Criminal Code also spent 3 years in Parliament, within a committee chaired by prosecutor Ponta,” Basescu stated.
The PMP President also stated that he promulgated the Criminal Code but lacked a team capable of analysing it, emphasising that “penal punishments in Romania are geared toward destroying the man” and that the PSD leader is seeking “to free his counterparts, the likes of [those who own] pig farms, hunting domains or TelDrum.”
“This is a penal policy we can no longer undertake. And I, the one who made the three-letter agencies very strong – and that was good –, I undertake, as the objective of an Opposition politician, the other side of the issue too, namely for the penal system to have as its main objective recovering the people. (…) I’m not asking the party… it’s premature for the party to get involved for the observance of fundamental rights, but I undertake to carry this topic further, and when the party considers [this topic] can bring benefits too – for the time being it doesn’t – it will be free to get engaged in this too. (…) Dragnea wants to free his counterparts, the likes of [those who own] pig farms, hunting domains or TelDrum,” Basescu said.
He pointed out that “the pardon is not for Udrea.” “Udrea was sentenced to six years, the pardon goes up to three years, they’re not connected. Romania needs the granting of wide-ranging pardons that would first of all take into account the categories that can be recovered for society, a new law on the serving of punishments, one that would capitalise, during the time spent behind bars, on the professional capacity and training of those jailed. (…) The granting of pardons aside, the money must be recuperated. I believe we should vote against the pardon law in the Lower Chamber,” Basescu added.