PM Ponta hints that President Iohannis would have pressed for his indictment. Presidential aide, anti-corruption chief prosecutor dismiss allegations

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Commenting on President Iohannis’ statement that the censure motion would be a good result, PM Victor Ponta on Thursday wondered if the Romanian president couldn’t possibly “press” on sending him to court.

“I wonder if he couldn’t possibly press so that I’ll be sent to court, as these statements seems abnormal coming from a Romanian president. If we talk about the Liberal chairwoman, of course, Mrs. Gorghiu may say whatever she wants, but Romania’s president should be a little more unbiased and treat all of us as Romania’s citizens. Liberals are not high-ranking citizens, and the rest of us second-class,” the Romanian premier told RTV on Thursday evening.

On Wednesday, President Klaus Iohannis had said that if the censure motion filed by the liberals passes, leading to the fall of the Government, that would be “a good thing.”
“Considering that I’m the President of Romania, I’m not involved in the censure motion, nor in the way parties negotiate it. Certainly the approval of the censure motion would be a good outcome,” the head of state explained.
According to Iohannis, a Yes vote to the no confidence motion would solve “a great problem of Romania.”
” I don’t mean to stress that I publicly support a PNL [National Liberal Party] motion, but such a motion will solve a great problem of Romania, the fact that it has an indicted prime minister. We are unique in a negative way with such a premier,” Iohannis said.

In retort, Presidential advisor Dan Mihalache said that if the premier had suspicions on the judiciary’s independence, he could notify the Judiciary Inspection upon the Superior Council of Magistracy.

“Ponta has a certain style. Victor Ponta is in the usual tone of the statements he makes believing he is very smart if hiding them underneath vague formulas. We at the level of the Presidential Administration do not want to play ping-pong with dubious balls, because we are now busy. If Mr. Ponta has any huge stress and a suspicion, as he says, regarding the independence of the judiciary, he may speak to the Judiciary Inspection; he has a consolidated experience already,” Mihalache.

The National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA) chief prosecutor Laura Codruta Kovesi also rejected Ponta’s allegations.

“We are not sensitive neither to persons who propose us or appoint us in our positions, and I believe we have proved that through DNA’s results. Therefore, I always rule out any eventual assumption or supposition that someone could exert pressure on a DNA case prosecutor. (…) The institution I represent and the colleagues I work with on a daily basis do their job by the law. I think we have proved in the past two years that we are not sensitive to pressure or intimidations; we do not judge people, we judge their deeds and try to investigate the acts allegedly committed,” she told Digi 24.

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