The Joint Standing Bureaus of the Senate and the Deputies’ Chamber on Wednesday decided, as of 2 pm, for the joint plenum meeting of Parliament to reexamine the draft budget for this year, at President Iohannis’s request.
The leaderships of the two chambers of Parliament established that on Tuesday 6 pm the Senators and Deputies are invited to submit their amendments and on Wednesday, starting 10 am, the joint budget-finance committee will re-analyze the project and make a report, to be then submitted to the joint plenary sitting for the voting.
President Klaus Iohannis on Friday sent back to Parliament for reexamination the 2019 state budget law, underscoring that the allocation of budget resources is “based on a non-realistic forecast,” which affects the functionality of some public institutions playing an essential role and also the development of the local communities and the achievement of some strategic investments.
Chairman of the Social Democratic Party (PSD) Liviu Dragnea on Monday stated that the budget was “very well” drafted and cannot be modified “at a single man’s whim, even if the man happens to be the President of Romania.”
PM Dancila: By weighing in on the 2019 budget, the Romanian president is again misinforming the Romanians
By weighing in on the 2019 budget and the statements on it, President Klaus Iohannis is playing “an electoral game at the expense of the Romanians” and “misinforms them,” Prime Minister Viorica Dancila said at the beginning of a government meeting on Tuesday.
“I had the feeling that we returned in time, to 2013, when another president would promulgate only the social security budget, with the same lies. The Romanian president misinforms the Romanians, inventing ridiculous explanations of why he made the decision to block the adoption of the 2019 budget. It is obviously an electoral game but that he is playing at the expense of the Romanians,” Dancila said.
She called “irresponsible” the statements of the president, adding that Iohannis generates worries that there is no pension money, although that does not have “any real basis”.
“Mr President Iohannis proves that he does not know elementary things when he says 1.4 billion lei are missing from the pension budget. In fact, after many years in 2019, the budget will have a surplus of 1.7 billion lei , as a result of the transfer of contributions from the employer to the employees – another measure that President Iohannis criticised, a measure that has shown its effectiveness. Another misinformation that the president has nonchalantly aired relates to pension increases. Mr President should carefully read the measures the Romanian government has passed. Because we increased pensions ahead of schedule, on July 1, 2017 for the year 2018 and on July 1, 2018 for the year 2019, by much more than inflation and the real increase in gross wages,” Dancila explained.
According to the head of the executive, if the government had done “what President Iohannis and his party would ask for, the pensions of the Romanians would have been much lower than they are now.”
“I consider the statements made by the president totally irresponsible, who is playing with the feelings of the people while getting pensioners worried that there is no pension money, a claim that has no real basis. What is Mr President trying to accomplish by insisting on issues that strike worries among pensioners? Is he laying the ground for a decision to cut off pensioners’ rights at the behest of the political parties they are supporting him, as it happened in the past? I am declaring loud and clear that pensioners have no reason to worry. Just as we have pledged, we continue with increasing pensions planned for January 1, 2020 this September 1. That is three months earlier than we had originally established. The Romanian government has the money to pay the pensions to secure all the rights set by law,” Dancila stated.
PSD: Instead of lying to Romanians, Iohannis should apologise to those he affected by blocking the budget
The Social Democratic Party (PSD) claims, in a press release, that “President Iohannis is once again lying to Romanians in his attempt to explain why he decided to block the adoption of the 2019 budget.” The PSD claims that this is just an electoral game, because Iohannis knows very well that Parliament will soon adopt the budget with him no longer able to stop its coming into force.
“It’s a game played at the expense of the children who were unable to collect their hiked benefits on 1 March 2019, as stipulated by the Government ordinance. It’s also a political game that President Iohannis is playing at the expense of pensioners to whom he lies just like he did in the past, by always saying that there is no longer money for the payment of pensions. However, reality has contradicted him every time. Pensions have been paid and hiked in advance of legal provisions. It’s a game that the President is playing against all Romanians who are waiting for the healthcare investments whose budget is higher by 6 billion year-on-year and by 16 billion compared to the budget of the Ciolos Government endorsed by President Iohannis,” the PSD claims.
The PSD lists “the three biggest lies that Iohannis has said today.”
The Social Democrats claim that President Iohannis lied when he said that 1.4 billion lei was missing from the pensions budget. “In fact, after a long time, in 2019 the budget will have a surplus of 1.7 billion lei, as a result of the transfer of contributions from employers to employees – a measure that was intensely criticised by President Iohannis,” the press release shows.
Likewise, according to the same source, President Iohannis lied when he said that the PSD could have hiked the child benefits.
“In fact, the PSD tabled all the necessary legislative acts to hike the benefits, however Iohannis blocked them by lodging challenges with the Constitutional Court and by sending the budget law back to be re-examined in Parliament. The parliamentary majority will do everything possible to adopt the budget as soon as possible,” the PSD points out.
“President Iohannis lied when he said that the PSD is delaying the hiking of the pensions. In fact, the pensions were hiked in advance, in July last year, instead of January 2019, and the PSD will hike them in advance in September, instead of January next year. Instead of lying to Romanians, Iohannis should have apologised to all those whom he affected during this period,” the communique adds.