The Government informs that the Administrative Code bill, which stipulates that persons who have a criminal record may hold positions within the Government after they are rehabilitated, was drafted and put up for debate by the Ciolos Government, and is not the initiative of the current ruling coalition, even though the coalition endorses its stipulations, which take into account the Constitutional Court’s jurisprudence and the Criminal Code.
“The bill concerning the Administrative Code was drafted and put up for public debate on 8 November 2016, two months before the current political coalition formed the Government. At that time, the Administrative Code bill, proposed and endorsed by the former Cabinet led by Prime Minister Dacian Ciolos, contained, in the same form, the article concerning the amending of law no.90/2001 on the way the Romanian Government and the ministries are organised and function,” the Government points out.
The introduction of the rehabilitation provision “does not represent an initiative on the part of the current ruling coalition,” according to the Government, which nevertheless endorses these amendments.
“At that time, the introduction of the legal provisions amending law no.90/2001 was motivated by the necessity to update the legislation on the central and local public administration in line with the jurisprudence of the Constitutional Court from recent years and to correlate it with other legislative acts with incidence in public administration,” reads the press release.
The Government points out that the rehabilitation, its conditions and effects are regulated by the Criminal Code. In what concerns the modification of one of the conditions required to hold the position of member of Government, the Government points out that, according to Article 169, Paragraph 1, of the Criminal Code, rehabilitation “annuls the downgrading and interdictions, as well as the inabilities resulting from the conviction.”
The modification thus comes “out of the need to bring clarity to the text of the current law no.90/2001.” The Government also quotes the Constitutional Court’s ruling which pointed out that law no.90 must be modified.
“We point out that all the provisions of the legislative act were devised by a working group formed by experts from the relevant ministries and from other institutions with prerogatives in the approval procedures. Likewise, we emphasise that observing Constitutional Court rulings is mandatory in the process of drafting legislative acts, including Constitutional Court ruling no.304/2017,” the communique points out.
The Administrative Code consists of 20 legislative acts that seek to clarify the provisions, to ensure their unitary implication – not open to interpretation –, to eliminate legislative contradictions and redundancies and situations of legislative vacuum, according to the Government.
The bill is still in public consultation and in the process of inter-ministerial approval, the interested institutions being still able to file proposals and observations.
The text that the Tudose Government put up for public consultation, in July, reiterates part of the provisions included in the bill drafted by the Development Ministry, back when the latter was headed by Vasile Dancu, including in what concerns law no.90.
A Tudose Government bill will modify law no.90/2001, which currently prevents persons who have a criminal record from becoming members of Government. The current Government plans to exempt from this interdiction persons who have been rehabilitated.