POLITICS

Quarantine Law, apple of discord between President Iohannis and Opposition leaders

The Senate’s Judiciary Committee on Tuesday has resumed its debate on the Government’s draft law on quarantine and isolation, but after about an hour, the committee’s senators adjourned the meeting in order to take note of the new amendments proposed to the bill.

 

President Iohannis stresses the urgent need for the quarantine bill and calls on the law makers to finalise talks

 

President Klaus Iohannis said on Tuesday that the Social Democratic Party (PSD) has been delaying the quarantine and isolation law and called on lawmakers to finalise talks on this piece of legislation.

“I am shocked by the way PSD has reacted and is reacting in Parliament now when a very important law is under discussion, the law regulating the isolation of sick people and the quarantine of people. (…) PSD is delaying this discussion,” Iohannis told a news briefing at the Cotroceni Presidential Palace.

He stressed the “urgent” need for this law and called on the law makers to finalise talks.

According to Iohannis, the delay in passing the law deprives the government of “a very important tool”.

The president described the attitude as “intolerable.”

“I’m telling you the truth, it’s extremely sad, it’s shocking, because this delay which the PSD probably wants to make it seem important or interesting can cost the lives of dozens, God forbid, maybe even hundreds of Romanians. I am resuming my call to Parliament: finalise the talks, approve a good form of this law! Otherwise, you will be morally responsible for the death of maybe tens or even hundreds of Romanians. This behaviour, this delay is intolerable,” added Iohannis.

He underscored that the COVID-19 pandemic is “the worst” health crisis of the last century.

“For 100 years now there has been no disease with such a profound impact, an impact that is felt in the lives of everyone, of nations, which is felt very strongly in national economies. Unfortunately, the effects of this pandemic in Romania become increasingly more visible. Today, unfortunately, we have again 637 new cases, and 30 more Romanians have died from this disease,” he said, according to Agerpres.

 

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PSD’s Ciolacu accuses Iohannis of blackmailing Parliament, trying to hide the Gov’t failure on the pandemic

 

Acting national chairman of the Social Democratic Party (PSD) Marcel Ciolacu claims that President Klaus Iohannis supports the violation of Romanians’ rights and freedoms and “is blackmailing Parliament” in an attempt to hide the fact that the government has “completely lost control of the [coronavirus] pandemic.”

“Do not take advantage of the pandemic to kill democracy! President Iohannis is supporting the violation of the rights and freedoms of Romanians as desired by the National Liberal Party (PNL) government and is blackmailing Parliament. That is how he is attempting to hide the fact that the government has completely lost control of the [coronavirus] pandemic due to their own ineptitudes. It is exclusively the fault of the Orban government that they have violated rights and freedoms by ministerial decree. That is how he managed to create a crisis for the infected patients to leave hospitals. It is outrageous and cynical to blame Parliament for all the ineptitudes of the Orban Cabinet!,” Ciolacu wrote on Facebook on Tuesday.

According to him, those who dispute the existence of the novel coronavirus do so using the very words of Klaus Iohannis.

“If there are Romanians who dispute the existence of the virus, they do it, unfortunately, using even the words of President Iohannis form March, when he said that the virus is a ‘simple cold’. Back then his mind was fully occupied with the thought only of early elections instead of fighting against the pandemic! The disaster state in which Romania is finding itself now, acknowledged today by the President himself, is entirely to His Government’s fault! You have had all the necessary levers for the efficient management of the pandemic. But you have left the situation get out of control! Stop trying to find culprits!,” wrote Ciolacu.

In his opinion, the bill sent by the government to Parliament “blatantly violates the rights and freedoms of citizens.”

“We will not give in to blackmail and we will not allow the violation of citizens’ rights and freedoms. The solution is a clear, applicable law that does not allow for abuses. We will do that!,” the PSD leader pointed out.

 

ALDE’s Tariceanu: Law on quarantine will pass when it is completely safe for Romanians

 

ALDE (Alliance of Liberals and Democrats) head Calin Popescu Tariceanu has said that the law on quarantine will pass Parliament “only when it no longer poses any threat to Romanians.”

The law on quarantine will pass Parliament when it no longer poses any threat to Romanians. When the decision regarding the hospitalization of people infected with the novel coronavirus or the goods being seized from people infected no longer belong to the politruks,” Tariceanu wrote on Facebook on Tuesday.

He accused President Klaus Iohannis of being “disconnected from reality” and “hiding the virus” to be able to hold early polls.

“How much disconnected from reality must you be, Prompter President, the very subject of cynicism in politics? You, who hid the virus so as to be able to hold early polls? You, who said that the virus was only an easy cold with a sore throat? You, who turn a blind eye to the members of the government who are stealing without shame when buying medical supplies?,” added the ALDE leader.

 

Cazanciuc: President blames inadmissibly Parliament for Government’s stupidities

 

The interim Speaker of the Senate, Robert Cazanciuc, stated on Tuesday that the head of state, Klaus Iohannis, blames “inadmissibly” Parliament regarding the quarantine and isolation law, adding that Social Democratic Party (PSD) does not procrastinate anything but wants a good normative act in this matter.

“I saw a little earlier a statement by the President of Romania in which he inadmissibly blames Parliament for the his Government’s stupidities. It is completely unacceptable for President Iohannis to blame Parliament for the number of positive cases in recent days. (… ) We do not accept him to teach us lessons, we do not accept blackmail. (…) President Iohannis is now coming to defend the nonsense in the Government’s draft law. He is defending the abusive deprivation of freedom in the Government’s bill, the abusive confiscation of goods on the grounds of pandemic the way his Government proposed, he is defending the forced labor that doctors will be subjected to through the Government’s bill. We will not accept this. The pandemic cannot be invoked to kill democracy,” Cazanciuc said in Parliament.

He stressed the need for a quarantine law, but this normative act must contain guarantees that the restriction of citizens’ rights is not done abusively.

“PSD does not procrastinate anything. When Mr. Iohannis was away at the weekend I remind you that Parliament worked until 4.00 in the morning. PSD MPs were here to fix the nonsense of the Orban Government. PSD wants to make a law not only for the authorities, but especially for the citizens,” said Robert Cazanciuc.

According to him, in March, Klaus Iohannis was thinking about early elections and said that the virus is a simple cold.

“President Iohannis is the only political leader who has denied the importance of this virus,” Cazanciuc said.The social-democrat said the Government had received all the leverage needed to control the COVID-19 pandemic.

“He received a vote for the Government, a vote for the state of emergency, a vote for the state of alert, a vote for all their measures, and now that the situation seems out of control he blames Parliament. It was not Parliament’s fault for the legislative vacuum (…) when they sent the the draft state of alert too late to Parliament. It is not Parliament’s fault that the Government sent a bad law to Parliament on the last day,” the PSD senator explained.

In his view, there was no need for the Government to wait for the motivation of the Constitutional Court’s decision to draw up the draft law on quarantine and isolation.

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