Orban Cabinet convened for first gov’t sitting, President Iohannis attending: “PSD has emptied the public accounts”. PM announces proposals for EU Commissioner

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The Liberal Cabinet led by Ludovic Orban has convened today in its first official government sitting, with President Klaus Iohannis attending. The head of state warned that some of the ministers had found “a very bad” situation in their ministries, while adding that “PSD has emptied the public accounts” and that it will be very difficult to close down the budget for this year and to draft the one for 2020.

First of the new Cabinet’s agenda is an emergency ordinance to downsize the ministries from 26 to 16 and another GEO on the salaries of the miners, considering that over 70 miners from Ocna Deja Mine are blocked underground.

At the beginning of the government sitting, President Iohannis talked about the “disastrous legacy” left behind by the Social Democrats, reiterating that the reason for which Romania has not developed better in the past 30 years was that PSD had been at rule.
He underlined that in the past 3 years, the SocDems “have exceeded any imagination” by operating systematic attacks against the judiciary, against anti-corruption fight, against investors and against the private business environment.

Iohannis argued that the situation is very bad in some ministries, for, before leaving, “PSD has emptied the public accounts”. “Now we have to see how we can cover the mature debts.”

The EU Commissioner issue

However, President Iohannis said he had also come to attend the government sitting to solve the “dragging issue” of the European Commissioner that Romania has to designate.

PM Ludovic Orban announced he will send two proposals to Brussels: Adina Vălean and Siegfried Mureșan, both Liberal MEPs. Sources from EPP said PM Ludovic Orban will have a phone talk to the EC President-elect Ursula von der Leyen on this topic.

It seems that previous discussions on this aspect had already taken place between von der Leyen and President Iohannis and that EPP had intensely lobbied that the EC Commissioner portfolio for Romania to be given to the EPP and not to the Socialists, as it had been negotiated in the first place.

EPP has strongly lobbied for Siegfried Mureșan, who is endorsed by Ludovic Orban and by part of PNL leaders, but also by some of Klaus Iohannis’ presidential aides.

Adina Văleans name has been advanced by President Iohannis, who said in an informal meeting that “she is highly competent” , as she ranked among the most top five influential MEPs.

Adina Vălean is also the first Romanian MEP elected as chairman of a parliamentary committee with the European Parliament.

PM Orban: Lots of arrears, the lazy will be out, stop the nepotism in institutions

PM Ludovic Orban told his ministers in the gov’t sitting there are a lot of arrears to deal with. “Last night, I came back to the Government at half past nine and I found nobody. We have to understand that we have to change the way of working, and as long as the premier and the minister are working, any person is called to meet his targets. People will have to understand we are in the citizen’s service and that every employee in the public institutions has this duty to solve all the problems he/she has to solve,” Orban said telling the ministers to kick off doing audits and to design “simple structures” of the ministries and to keep “only competent and dedicated employees”.

Who is lazy and has got used to take his/her salary without doing anything will have to leave sooner or later“, the new PM stressed.

In an attempt to take all political connections out of ministries and public institutions, Orabn also asked ministers to stop all ‘sham contests’ started by the Dancila Gov’t at the last minute.

It is very important to kick off the procedure to clean up public institutions from all those who had been hired due to nepotism and connections. I signed yesterday decisions to dismiss the boy of so-and-so, etc“, Orban said, announcing there will be more firing among secretaries of state, state councillors and other public employees who depend on the ministries and PM.

He also urged FM Bogdan Aurescu to start reviewing the appointments in diplomacy, for ambassadors and consuls and if they met legal requirements.

“Please, immediately recall those who have nothing to do with diplomacy and with the diplomatic missions”.

Among the first dismissals reported after the new Gov’t had been installed, there were the ones of Adrian Nastase’s son and of Dumitru Buzatu’s son.

Mihnea Nastase, former PM Adrian Nastase’s youngest son has resigned from the position of honorary adviser of the PM’s office, while Tudor Buzatu, the son of Dumitru Buzatu, the leader of the Vaslui County Council (PSD) has also resigned from the secretary of state office.

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