Prime Minister Mihai Tudose announced on Monday evening that a “mini government reshuffle” is next, pointing out that he will make a decision this week concerning the replacement of some ministers.
“No one is retired from this position and the first day of being a prime minister is the first day of the last days, at one point one must leave. You have mentioned that [confidence] poll. I am not a sociologist, but, also considering what I discussed with others, if you weren’t born yesterday, there’s no way to drop from 40 to 20 in just two weeks. (…) Even more, this is a small world, one will find out who ordered it, how he ordered it, but all right, let’s move on. However, also assuming that – and here is where the resignation issue has come up from -, assuming that it is true (…), we’ll see. I am there to govern for the Romanians. If the Romanians no longer believe in what we are doing, we’ll all go home,” Tudose told Antena 3 private television broadcaster.
According to the PM, one cannot govern “by force.”
“We cannot govern by force, against what the Romanian people wants. This is where my discontent comes from and then, if things are like this, an assessment is needed to see, it is either my fault, through what I do or don’t do, or there are some things in the government justifying these figures – the presence of some ministers with criminal offense issues, the lack of activity of certain ministers or the lack of results – and this week I will be making some tough, but necessary decisions,” Tudose said.
Asked if this poll that was made public could be “a game”, Tudose replied: “Quite correct. (…) Let us say that it is true, I start from the premise that it is true. If so, I repeat, there are two problems – either I have a problem and I must go home, or there are some problems in the government and we need to fix them.”
At the same time, asked if these problems could be related to the presence in the government of some ministers investigated for criminal offenses, Tudose replied: “Yes. (…) If we are to make a reset in respect to image and some effects of the governance, I will tell you that there are still at least two ministers, whom I will ask to leave the Cabinet. (…) A mini reshuffle. (…) There are three [ministers] with problems, who, indeed, are creating problems on a public perception level and some of the situations on the European Commission level as well.”
The PM also said he will take responsibility for the proposals on the reshuffle in the government and will submit them to the vote of the ruling coalition.
“I will announce it this week, I will firstly announce the party, of course, not on TV. (…) I will assume the proposals and I will submit them to the coalition voting,” Tudose also showed.
He pointed out that he has already found the solutions regarding the replacements, however he hasn’t made a final decision. “I don’t have a final decision. I have found some good solutions, if in the meanwhile something better comes up, it’s OK,” the PM also said.
Tudose admits having considered resignation
Prime Minister Mihai Tudose on Monday also said that he announced in a close group of friends that he is considering tendering his resignation.
Asked on Antena 3 private television broadcaster if he considers handing his resignation, the Prime Minister said: “Yes, I have said it. I have said it very clearly, I have told a close circle of three, maximum four persons. (…) If things look so bad and the government has collapsed [in confidence polls], let’s go home, as it means we’re not doing our job right.”
Gov’t in a somewhat similar situation with that of the Grindeanu line-up, difference is many urge him to stay
PM told Antena 3 that the government is currently in a somewhat similar situation with that of the Grindeanu line-up, but that unlike the case of his predecessor, many fellow Social Democrats have asked him not to leave the government helm.
“In the afternoon and in the evening my office was brimming with colleagues, party organization presidents who came to ask me not to leave. The situation may be a bit similar to that 100 days ago, the first 100 days in office of the Grindeanu government, yet it’s somewhat the opposite because whereas many were asking him to leave, in my case they beseech me not to,” said Tudose when asked at Realitatea TV private broadcaster if he does not fear his PSD colleagues may react similarly to how they did in the case of Sorin Grindeanu.
It also emerged from the discussion that the Premier’s relation with Chairman of the Social Democratic Party (PSD) Liviu Dragnea is on the rocks, as Tudose said: “Some things have skidded off. We are trying to find a solution tomorrow. If we fail to find the solution, we’ll have to take some measures.”
The head of the government reiterated that he will ask five Cabinet members to leave. When the host suggested ministers Sevil Shhaideh, Rovana Plumb and Viorel Ilie are in the crosshairs, the PM replied: “Your understanding is correct. (…) There are another two colleagues I will ask to leave the government because of underperformance.”
He mentioned he also has some reasons of dissatisfaction over the party’s involvement in certain government decisions, that these issues would be discussed on Tuesday and that if the conclusion emerges that “things can work differently, they will, if not, it’s obvious someone has to go home.”
Asked if he is ready to quit as head of the government if the PSD does not accept the reshuffle involving the five ministers, Tudose replied: “I cannot take responsibility for carrying on with something I say does not work.”
Relationship with PSD head Dragnea in a ‘not happy moment’
Asked in a show at Antena 3 private broadcaster if there is a wedge between himself and the PSD leader, the head of the government replied: “I’d say we are in a not so happy moment of the relationship,” but did not elaborate on the reasons why things turned sour so short after his appointment to the helm of the government.
While Tudose said that he has nothing to blame himself for, he added the outcomes hinge on the discussions to be held on Tuesday when he expects a blunt talk on all issues, that he is intent on streamlining the government’s activity and that he would steer clear of throwing the country in chaos now, as the rulers have responsibilities to fulfill and projects underway. Yet on the other hand – he added – no one clings to the office and adamantly stays glued to the chair as “governing is for the people, not against them.”
President’s Spokesperson: Iohannis had a meeting with PM Tudose; PSD should sort out issues
President Klaus Iohannis on Tuesday had a meeting with Prime Minister Mihai Tudose, President’s Spokesperson Madalina Dobrovolschi announced on Tuesday.
“He had this meeting. It took place today,” Dobrovolschi told a press conference at the Cotroceni Presidential Palace.
She pointed out that “PSD [the Social Democratic Party, major at rule] should sort out its issues.