The Parliament Standing Bureaus are called to convene on Monday to discuss the timetable for the debate and vote of the no-confidence motion filed on Friday by AUR and USR-PLUS MPs against the Cabinet led by Liberal Florin Citu. Originally scheduled for Saturday, the Parliament session was suspended due to lack of quorum.
USRPLUS submits no confidence motion against PM Citu
USR PLUS Co-Chairman Dan Barna announced on Friday the failure of governing coalition negotiations, as each formation maintained its point of view and no common ground could be reached.
“The no-confidence motion has just been submitted,” Barna said in a statement at the Palace of Parliament.
He added that USR PLUS ministers will resign at the beginning of next week.
USR PLUS Co-Chairman Dacian Ciolos stressed that the party wants to continue to be part of the governing coalition, along with PNL and UDMR, but under another Prime Minister.
“We can no longer work with Prime Minister Citu because he no longer inspires confidence,” Ciolos said.
The motion filed by USR-PLUS and AUR was signed by 122 MPs. For the document to be adopted in Parliament, a minimum of 234 votes are required, which means USR-PLUS and AUR will need the support of other parliamentary parties. From the opposition, PSD says it will vote the motion, but only if it leads to snap elections. The Social-Democrats want to file their own motion, claiming USR-PLUS ministers should also be dismissed.
No-confidence motion: ‘Anghel Saligny’ national investment plan is nothing but a party piggy bank
The no-confidence motion initiated by USR PLUS and AUR against the Citu Government was submitted on Friday evening to the Parliament. Titled “The dismissal of the Citu Government, the only chance for Romania to live!,” the document emphasizes that Romania is currently led by a government that “no longer has political legitimacy because it doesn’t have the support of a parliamentary majority.”
“Romania is currently led by a government that no longer has political legitimacy because it lacks the support of a parliamentary majority. Yet the biggest shortcoming of the government headed by Florin Citu is the lack of moral legitimacy. A person who has seriously brushed with the law in the past and who bends the law now does not present the minimum necessary guarantees to lead the executive power in Romania,” the motion states.
According to the document, in recent months Florin Citu has shown that he is “incapable of leading a coalition government, that he is incapable of getting out of the logic of narrow party thinking. This man and all those supporting him seem determined to sacrifice the general interest, the welfare of this country’s citizens, only to win their party’s internal competition.”
The signatories of the motion also argue that Prime Minister Florin Citu and his supporters have shown an entire country that “group or party interests are above the interests of the country.”
“In order to garner the necessary support for his election as PNL Chairman, Florin Citu has devised and implemented a plan to finance Liberal mayors with money from the national budget. Without establishing clear criteria for the projects’ selection, monitoring and auditing, the ‘Anghel Saligny’ national investment plan is nothing more than a party piggy bank. In order to have this scheme for influencing the vote at the PNL Convention implemented, Florin Citu dismissed the Justice Minister and immediately appointed an interim ready to execute his orders. The legal and administrative procedures that had to be followed, as due in a rule of law state, were hindering him. Does Romania need investments? Definitely yes. But any local community must have access to a national plan, regardless of the mayor’s political color. We need to get out of the logic of kinship relationships and cronyism of the local barons in order to build a society and a country where every citizen finds themselves and where access to public investment sources is based on merit and competence, not on the mayor’s party membership card,” the motion signatories wrote.
Reactions to the no-confidence motion initiated by USRPLUS and AUR
PNL’s Orban hopeful that there will be a quorum to discuss the timetable for the no-confidence motion
National leader of the National Liberal Party (PNL), Ludovic Orban, said on Sunday that he is worried about a possible intensification of protests against the liberals, amidst an ongoing political and governmental crisis.
“I am extremely worried that there is great dissatisfaction. I am convinced that people are expecting from us what we have promised them: four years of political peace, four years of honest and efficient government to the benefit of the citizens. They do not want quarrels, scandals, conflicts, crises inside the ruling coalition, as they are expecting us to focus on putting into practice the good things we have done for the people,” said Orban when asked if he was concerned about the intensification of public protests.
He called for dialogue and negotiations in order to keep together the ruling coalition made up of PNL, the Save Romania Union – Freedom, Unity and Solidarity Party ( USR PLUS) alliance, and the Hungarian Democratic Union of Romania (UDMR).
“My point of view as national leader of the National Liberal Party, which I have expressed publicly, is that the only coalition that can ensure a government to the benefit of Romania is the coalition made up of PNL, USR PLUS and UDMR, obviously with backing from the group of national minority MPs in the Chamber of Deputies. Any other form of coalition does not have the capacity to govern unitarily, to make the necessary reforms for Romania, to ensure development projects that are funded either by European funds or the national budget, and especially to increase the quality of life and to increase the income of the citizens. (…) We must sit at the table of dialogue, at the negotiating table, to find those matters that bring us closer, to remove what separates us, to regain confidence among the partners and to focus on what the Romanians are expecting from us: a successful government to the benefit of the citizens,” said Orban.
He added that he did not cause the current political crisis.
“This political and governmental crisis has been caused by decisions that were not mine and that were taken without my agreement, without my consent, even without my prior, correct information, as it should have been. As president of PNL, I have done everything possible to ensure the cohesion of the coalition, to hold the party and the coalition together, and I never agreed with decisions that would jeopardise the normal functioning of the governing coalition,” said Orban.
He voiced hope that on Monday at noon there will be a quorum to carry out the procedures regarding the schedule of the motion of censure against his challenger, Prime Minister FlorinCitu.
“The standing bureaus are called to convene on Monday, at 12:00hrs. Two successive convocations made in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution, with the rules for joint meetings, have failed to mount the necessary quorum. (…) I hope that on Monday, at 12:00hrs, we will have the quorum to carry out the constitutional and legal procedures regarding the schedule for the motion of censure,” said Orban.
The PNL leader added that the parliamentary forces currently against the government “clearly have a majority.”
“Now there is competition between motions of censure. Unfortunately, we have reached a situation in which the government today is threatened by motions of censure, and the parliamentary forces that are against the government clearly have a majority,” said Orban.
Ciolacu: If USR-AUR motion gets a vote, PSD will vote for it
If the motion of censure of the Save Romania Union – Alliance of the Unity of Romanian (USR-AUR) against incumbent Prime Minister Florin Caitu reaches the vote stage in the plenary sitting of Parliament, the Social Democrats will vote for it, but only if there are prospects for early elections, national leader of the opposition Social Democratic Party (PSD) Marcel Ciolacu said on Sunday .
Otherwise, added Ciolacu, at the end of the PSD National Political Bureau meeting, his party is considering a joint motion with USR PLUS and AUR.
“If the motion of the USR-AUR alliance gets a vote in the plenary sitting, then PSD will vote for it, but not for Barna to return to the government and Ghinea to ruin the National Recovery and Resilience Plan (PNRR); but we will go all in to early elections. Therefore, the USR-AUR alliance must support this approach. If the USR-AUR alliance motion fails to get a vote in the plenary sitting, we are willing to talk to USR and AUR and agree on a text of the motion; they should sign the motion so that we will have the 234 votes needed, and in 10 minutes’ time we will table the motion. The Citu government has to go,” said the Social Democrat leader.
PNL’s Turcan: USR has been no Snow White in Gov’t
Labour Minister Raluca Turcan of the National Liberal Party (PNL), major at rule, has criticised the decision of the Save Romania Union – Freedom, Unity and Solidarity Party (USR PLUS), PNL’s junior coalition partners, to try and remove Prime Minister Florin Citu, saying in a Facebook post that “USR has been no Snow White in the government.”
“Let it be clear once again: USR has been Snow White in the government, USR was part of and responsible for all the failures of the government. Like PNL and UDMR [Hungarian Democratic Union of Romania],” Turcan wrote on her social media page on Sunday.
Turcan says USR PLUS will be accountable to its constituents for forging an alliance with the oppositionlliance for the Union of Romanians (AUR) to topple the government.
“The USR-PLUS forging an alliance with a party about which all USR leaders have always stated that it is extremist, just to overthrow the Citu government, is the mistake for which USR-PLUS is accountable to its own voters,” Turcan wrote.
She believes that the main priority should now be to ensure the country’s governance.
“The major problem is, however, ensuring the country’s governance at a difficult time, marked by uncertainties related to the developments in the COVID-19 pandemic as a result of only a small percentage of Romanian having got vaccinated against COVID-19, and global economic bottlenecks, along with price increases, after the abrupt cessation of activities in 2020. Those are the problems, which are not easy; that is why they needed a solid government with a common and equal responsibility of the three parties of the coalition. It is with these problems and the effects of their instability and aggravation that USR threatens and blackmails us – either their way or the highway – if you don’t replace the prime minister because that’s what we want, we will pull out of the government and leave you – PNL – to drown in these problems,” wrote Turcan.
She added “PNL will not get drowned; PNL will defend its prime minister and PNL will continue to govern and will do absolutely everything necessary to stabilise the current situation and solve the difficult problems that afflict us all irrespective of our political leanings.”
Compiled from Agerpres