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June 30, 2022

Justice Minister Ion: Governing coalition working extraordinarily well, less on the judiciary

The governing coalition is working extraordinarily well, less on the judiciary, as the Hungarian Democratic Union of Romania (UDMR) is sidestepping the governing program, Justice Minister Stelian Ion said on Wednesday after attending the meeting of the governing coalition which met to discuss the timetable in Parliament for disbanding the Special Section for Investigating Crime in Justice (SIIJ).

“The coalition is working extraordinarily well, less on the judiciary. The National Liberal Party and USR PLUS share the same opinion on this chapter, as we plan to call an extraordinary session next week to dissolve the Section for the Investigation of Judicial Crimes (SIIJ) and restore powers, as per the Venice Commission’s recommendation and the government’s bill. Yet the UDMR has a different opinion. I find it totally unacceptable that UDMR does not respect the governing program, as it attempts to somehow deceive the electorate by pretending to dismantle the SIIJ but restoring it as a section of the General Prosecutor’s Office. We cannot just pretend to respect the governing program,” said Stelian Ion.

He pointed out that, according to the Venice Commission’s opinion, the SIIJ must be dismantled and the prosecutors should get the same powers as prior to the establishment of the section, and not refer the SIIJ cases to another structure “so as to repeat exactly the same mistakes as in the past.”

“I am disappointed. I see that, regrettably, UDMR is mainly following the same line as so far, because it made some compromises, but only halfway, in the sense that it agrees to have the SIIJ dismantled, but wants it restored as the same old Jane. It is unacceptable to introduce an amendment that carries the risks of bringing the SIIJ back in another form, with a different name, with a different label. That’s what the colleagues from UDMR propose, but this cannot be accepted,” the JusMin said, according to Agerpres.


UDMR’s Kelemen: There is no rift in the coalition, we agree with the abolishing of the SIIJ


Deputy Prime Minister Kelemen Hunor, the chair of the Hungarian Democratic Union of Romania (UDMR) stated on Wednesday that there is no blockage within the governing coalition on the topic of the dismantlement of the Section for the Investigation of Judicial Crimes (SIIJ) and added that he expects the Senate to be convoked in extraordinary session on the topic, the law being already on the agenda.

“I don’t see any blockage. (…) We have a single vote and I am speaking about an amendment that says that magistrates will be investigated by an existing section, nothing is abolished, nothing is established, it’s an existing department of the General Prosecutor’s Office – the criminal investigation and criminology department, our proposal is not to repeat the mistakes of the past, not to make another mistake, another department, the magistrates to be investigated by that department. (…) Surely, in the Judiciary Committee this amendment may pass or not. In case it does pass the Judiciary Committee, it goes to the Senate’s vote. If it fails, we will support the option of the Government. If it passes, then certainly another procedure will follow, as we are speaking of a bicameralism issue (…) Otherwise, there is no blockage, we are for abolishing the SIIJ and I asked the Senate be convoked as quickly as possible. (…) I have no disputes, neither with the Justice Minister, nor anyone else, I would like to abolish the department next week,” Kelemen Hunor mentioned, after participating in the a meeting of the governing coalition.

The UDMR leader recalled that he supports the amendment submitted by the Parliamentary group of the Union.

“Whoever wants, votes, whoever wants, does not vote. There is no rift in the coalition, we agree with the abolishing of the SIIJ. This amendment was not subjected to a vote. (…) We collaborate well with the Justice Minister, I understand his position, he isn’t alone in the coalition and doesn’t have the possibility to decide on important matters,” Kelemen Hunor added.

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