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September 20, 2019
JUSTICE

Justice Minister triggers procedure to appoint new Prosecutor General. Toader on new Prosecutor General: Must be of good faith and attached to people

The Justice Minister stated on Thursday that a future Prosecutor General will have to be someone who has a lot of good faith and attachment to the people and to the fundamental freedoms of the citizen. The statements came after the Justice Ministry triggered the selection procedure for a new Prosecutor General.

“The portrait of the Prosecutor General – but a human, not a computer-based sketch – will have to be someone with managerial skills, who has professional know-how, who knows the system with its good and less-than-good parts, who has the capacity to reform it where needed, and, on top of everything else listed, a lot of good faith is also needed, attachment to the people is needed, attachment to the rights, the fundamental freedoms of the citizen is needed, attachment to the values of rule of law is needed, to European values,” Justice Minister Tudorel Toader stated on Thursday.

The statements come after the Justice Ministry announced that it has triggered the selection procedure for the appointment of a new Prosecutor General at the helm of the Prosecutor’s Office attached to the High Court of Cassation and Justice (PICCJ), an office that will become vacant on April 28, when Augustin Lazar’s term in office expires. The procedure will take place from March 13 to April 5.

The Justice Ministry is organising, at its headquarters in Bucharest, from March 13 to April 5, the selection of prosecutors in view of nominating a prosecutor for the office of Prosecutor General of the Prosecutor’s Office attached to the High Court of Cassation and Justice, vacant starting on 28 April 2019, the Justice Ministry’s website shows. According to the announcement, candidates will be able to sign up until 28 March 2019, 5.30 p.m., at the Justice Ministry’s Human Resources Directorate.

The candidates will take part, on April 3-4, in an interview with the Justice Minister. During the interview, the Justice Minister will be backed by the Justice Ministry’s secretaries of state.

In order to ensure transparency, the hearing of the candidates will be broadcast live on the Justice Ministry’s website, will be recorded and published on the ministry’s website.

The results of the selection will be posted at the Justice Ministry headquarters and published on its website, on April 5.

The minister’s nomination will be forwarded to the Section for Prosecutors of the Superior Council of the Magistracy, in order to obtain its opinion. After its opinion is obtained, the Justice Minister will forward the nomination to the Romanian President.

The approved timetable could undergo changes depending on the number of candidates.

Prosecutor General Augustin Lazar’s term in office ends on April 28, according to his resume. However, Tudorel Toader triggered a dismissal from office procedure against Lazar on 24 October 2018. Meanwhile, Augustin Lazar has lodged with the Alba Court of Appeals a request for the suspension of the dismissal from office procedure triggered by the Justice Minister. A decision on the request is still pending.

The Section for Prosecutors of the Superior Council of the Magistracy issued a negative opinion on Tudorel Toader’s request to have the Prosecutor General dismissed from office. The dismissal request nevertheless reached President Iohannis, who announced, in January 2019, that he will not dismiss the Prosecutor General even though Toader had sent him, several times, the documents on whose basis he had asked for Lazar’s dismissal.

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