The Social Democratic Party (PSD) leader, Prime Minister Viorica Dancila, on Thursday has stated that, if the party asks her to run in the presidential elections she will do it. However, at this point, her option is to rather endorse “another candidate.”
“I haven’t considered this yet, I just thought we are going to support another candidate and I, as a Prime Minister, Chairperson of the PSD, I will support this other candidate to win the presidential elections. But I wouldn’t want anyone to believe I am a coward. If the party asks me to run in the presidential elections and believes this is the only solution, then I will accept what the party says. However, at this point, I believe it will be best to have another candidate. For us it’s important to back the persons that enjoy the trust of the party and who will be supported by all organisations, who will create that wave of trust we keep talking about, both among our members and among our sympathizers, but also among other citizens, for I hope we will get a good score,” said Dancila, at DC News, when asked if she believes it’s normal for the PSD leader to also be the candidate to run in the presidential elections, even when she is also the Prime Minister.
She also added that the PSD is an organised party, which knows what to do in an electoral campaign. “We know how to speak to people, what to say to people, for we took good measures, but, at the same time, we need other people to join us. And maybe we made mistakes, for we didn’t speak to the young enough or to the multinationals, diaspora. Yes, we must come with messages and good things for other segments than the ones we have prioritized until now.”
When asked again if she would accept a possible proposal from the PSD Congress to run in the presidential elections, Viorica Dancila said: “If there is no other option to take us to the second round, so that we can win the elections, if the party asks for it, I won’t step back, but, as I said, my option right now is to back another candidate.”
PM doubting President Iohannis’ involvement in Romania’s EU Council presidency
Prime Minister Viorica Dancila does not believe that President Klaus Iohannis had much involvement in Romania’s managing the Presidency of the Council of the European Union, and yet the head of state “makes believe the good results results good is due.”
“I do not think President Iohannis had much involvement in what the rotating presidency was, but now he is making believe the good results are due to him, which does not seem right to me (…) The President had known from the outset the stage of preparations for taking over the rotating presidency, for I had a discussion with President Iohannis before taking over the rotating presidency. I explained that we are well prepared that we have files in each area (…) that we know which files will be closed and that there will be a smooth transition to the Romanian presidency, that I know how the European institutions work because nine years I was a MEP; and yet he came out with those statements that actually caused image damage and I think that was not fair. Moreover, I saw the President was very pleased with the congratulations he received, but at the same time he did not cooperate with the Romanian government for the time Romania held the rotating presidency; we did not even discuss important files. (…) I would have expected the President to call, to contact the Romanian Government on some important topics,” Dancila told DC News.
She added that Iohannis did not get in touch with her even after the Romanian presidency of the EU Council was over, and that there should have been more institutional co-operation on certain subjects so that Romania could stand to gain more.
“I tried, and I believe that more co-operation was needed to get some good things for Romania, such as joining the Schengen Area. I was hoping the president at the summit in Sibiu would raise this issue, or at least, that he would at least have a reaction when others were saying that will not happen,” added the PM.
PM on GRECO report: These things must be clarified by magistrates; we should take the Netherlands as example
Prime Minister Viorica Dancila, in relation to the topics signaled by the GRECO report, said that “these things must be clarified by the magistrates” and also that “justice needs to be done by those in the judicial and not by the Romanian President, the Romanian Prime Minister or other political forces.”
“This is double measure, since we were talking about double standards, including from Mr President Iohannis. On the one hand, we have a referendum that specifies we are not allowed to issue emergency ordinances, we are not allowed to intervene in the justice business, which is fair and, on the other hand, we are asked to intervene. So, I don’t believe that justice is done depending on how it benefits or disadvantages a person, regardless of that person’s position in the Romanian state. Second of all, the GRECO report is dated in March. Which means before the referendum. I saw that Mr President refers to the May 26 referendum. More than that, I saw it is a great debate among judges and prosecutors, magistrates. I believe that these things must be clarified by the magistrates and we need to take the Netherlands’s example, which sent a letter to GRECO and said that when the magistrates reach consensus it will come with the specifications related to GRECO,” Viorica Dancila on Thursday told DC News.
The PM added there are 14 European states, among which France, Germany, the Netherlands, which “did not implement everything in the GRECO Report, while they explained all the observations very all.”
“I believe that this is how we should do it too and, if, indeed, we want to and we don’t have a double measure, according to what benefits us when it comes to justice, for justice must reach a consensus and then we take a measure. But I saw the opinions are divided and I believe justice must be done by those in the judicial and not by the Romanian President, the Romanian PM or other political forces,” said Dancila.
Romania made very little progress in adopting measures to prevent corruption among MPs, judges and prosecutors and to respond to the concern related to the controversial reform of the judicial system it draws the attention of the anti-corruption body of the Council of Europe, GRECO, in two reports published on Tuesday.