PM Citu takes over Health Ministry as interim. USR insists on withdrawing endorsement for the PM


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After dismissing Health minister Vlad Voiculescu and after USR chair and deputy PM Dan Barna had refused to be named interim, PM Florin Citu has been the one who took over the Health Ministry as interim. Sources revealed though that the PM has delegated his powers to secretary of state in the Health Ministr, Andrei Baciu.

Immediately after, Florin Cîțu has revoked the order issued by the secretary of state Andreea Moldovan on nee quarantine requirements that caused the crisis in the ruling coalition.

The order introduced new criteria for placing localities under lockdown, such as the Covid testing level, the incidence rate and the occupancy of hospital beds and from the intensive care units.

The document introduced a score based on a scale. Cities and metropolitan areas with over 100,000 inhabitants could have been placed under quarantine if they had minimum 60 points, and the rest of localities if they had minimum 70 points. For the quarantine to end only one requirement was needed, namely that the incidence rate to fall down below three cases per 1,000 inhabitants.

At the same time, PM Florin Citu has summoned a new government sitting today at 13:00hrs, after the one scheduled on Wednesday had not taken place anymore amid the tensions between the prime minister and the USR-PLUS alliance, which decided to withdraw their support for Citu as PM following Voiculescu’s dismissal.

PM Citu argued a day ago that there are things “that cannot be delayed” on the agenda of the government sitting.

Although there were rumors that USR-PLUS minister might boycott the gov’t sitting, they attended it eventually, while Dan Barna would have told PM Citu at the beginning of the meeting that USR-PLUS is no longer endorsing him for the PM seat.

USR-PLUS MEP Dragos Tudorache had told Digi24 on Wednesday evening there is no boycott, but it’s about “a coherent stance” in line with what they had previously said, meaning that they do not trust PM Florin Citu anymore and that they want a discussion within the ruling coalition as a matter of urgency.

“This is what we reproach to PM Citu. It is not about Vlad Voiculescu, about blackmail or egos, like I saw it was rumoured, it is just about the way PM Citu understands how this coalition is working. We want to have this debate at the level of coalition leaders to understand how exactly we should proceed any further”, Tudorache said.

Deputy PM Kelemen Hunor (UDMR leader) also sent a message to his coalition partners from USR-PLUS that there is no reason for replacing PM Florin Citu. Kelemen Hunor said that the country cannot be thrown into a political crisis after four months of governing. He opined that USR-PLUS should realize that they had been a little hasty with the request to replace the premier.

However, after the government sitting, PM Citu said in a press statement that the USR-PLUS ministers’ attending the weekly gov’t sitting “is an important step to unblock the situation”. Yet, he avoided to say if he is resigning.

“I see the Coalition is working. I thanked my colleagues that they had the strength to get over their grudge”, Citu said. Asked if he is willing to resign, the PM replied: “The ruling goes on”.

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