PM Ciolos: I don’t know Soros, Ponta took photos with him

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PM Dacian Ciolos on Monday rejected accusations that he would be “sold” to billionaire George Soros, saying he doesn’t know Soros, unlike former PM Victor Ponta and other Social Democrats who met the US businessman several times, and were even photographed together.

“I don’t know this gentleman (e.n. George Soros). Of course, I heard of him in the media, I read about him. Yet, I had nothing to do with him. Instead, I saw that former premier Ponta and other ministers of Ponta cabinet took pictures with Mr. Soros and met several times. I don’t know what they discussed back then, but they come now and try to throw this negative image on this government,” PM Ciolos told Adevarul Live.

He pointed out that some people in the government have worked in the civil society area. “The fact that there are people in this government coming from the civil society and who have proven for years that the NGOs have been more efficient than the state institutions in many areas and the fact that these people, once they came in the Government, have worked to streamline the state institutions, I don’t know if it means to be sold to foreigners,” the prime minister added.

Ciolos also denied accusations that he would be “sold to Brussels”.

“There is this trend to touch the nationalist string of those who were in power in the previous years and who took many regions in Romania to poverty and who are now, many of them, criminally prosecuted for managing the public money. I don’t know how is to be a good Romanian, patriot if achieving these results,” Ciolos said.

He reminded the period when he was European commissioner on Romania’s behalf and drafted the Common Agricultural Policy.

“The Common Agricultural Policy reform cut the budgetary allotments in agriculture to raise them for Romania and other Eastern European countries. So this is the way that I am sold to Brussels. Due to credibility we managed to attract investments, to make jobs and I think Romania starts to be credible from this point of view,” the PM argued.

Public administration reform needed

PM Ciolos also told Adevarul Live that a public administration reform is needed, a reform to get rid of any political influence and to enable “honest, professional” servants to accede.

“We need this administration reform (…) It’s important for honest, professional people in administration to know that they can accede a leading position if they are efficient and that they don’t always need a political party’s endorsement or that they will be replaced by an outsider who has no expertize in administration but who is named by a party from other reasons than to lead the administration in a performing manner,” Ciolos stated, while underlining that the administration’s depolitization must be assumed by a political majority in the Parliament.

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