President Iohannis: Government rotation will not be done during the education strike


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President Klaus Iohannis stated, on Thursday in Sibiu, that the procedures for the government rotation should start on Friday, but only if the strike in Education ends. “I don’t think that the rotation will be done during negotiations“, added the head of state.

“I am not going to oppose any formula that leads to a stable government. Discussions are still taking place, negotiations are still taking place. The coalition has to decide what it wants the future Government to look like and who should be in the governing coalition, but I am confident that things will be resolved. Now of course, today being Thursday and the strike still not over, we will see if we will manage to start the procedure tomorrow or in a few days, but that is not important, if now immediately or in a week, two the rotation is done. It is important to have a clear procedure, to know how the coalition will work and to have a Government that guarantees the stability of the government and the stability of Romania. These things I value very much and I have conveyed them to those in the leadership of the coalition”, said Klaus Iohannis, when asked on Thursday in Sibiu if the UDMR should continue to govern or if the new Executive should be supported and formed only by the PNL and PSD.

Asked if the appointment of the prime minister, scheduled to start on Friday, could be postponed, the head of state answered: “Tomorrow the procedure should begin, this under the conditions in which the strike in education is certainly completed. We will see”.

Questioned if the strike will not be ended, when the procedures for the rotation of prime ministers could start, President Iohannis replied: “Then it is necessary for the Government and the coalition in general to continue negotiating with the unions until a solution is found.” “I don’t think that rotation will be done during negotiations. It is still quite complicated and both are complicated procedures. They can be taken one at a time”, the head of state added.

At the same time, while in Sibiu today, President Klaus Iohannis sent a message to parents, students and teachers and told them to trust that things will improve in the educational system, including the salary of teachers.

The head of state said that he expected that there would be more discussions in the public space about the fact that the Parliament adopted the new education laws, in ordinary procedure. “I would very much like those who have been talking a lot lately about what we should do to note that we have taken steps and we will continue to do so,” said Iohannis.

“I have expressed myself on this issue, to the surprise of some, and I stand by my opinion: the teachers’ requests are well-founded. It is perhaps even a little difficult to understand and convey why teachers are a category that earns very little and, at the same time, offers everything to the community. A teacher also offers the person and the knowledge and the dedication to educate the young generation. At the same time, we must see that things cannot be corrected overnight. That’s why I think we need to see what can be done quickly and the Government has promised some issues that can be solved quickly, but we also need to see what can’t be done quickly, but there is political will to do these things. Then the negotiations must be conducted in such a way as to reach a common conclusion and an agenda. To know exactly when and what is feasible to do. Naturally, the unions always ask for a lot and, if possible, a lot of money. Although it is easy to understand – this is a problem that cannot be solved instantly, but my belief is that these issues will be solved in the not-so-distant future. I don’t want to say that in half a year, etc”, said the President.

However, the head of state also said that he was surprised by the fact that those who organized the strike in education did not discuss the new Education laws adopted by the Parliament. “On the other hand, I admit that I was a little surprised that none of those who organized the strike noted or pointed out that it was precisely during this period that the Parliament approved the new education laws. I would have expected, at least marginally, that these things would be mentioned. It is the first time, for a long time, that education laws are properly approved in Parliament, in ordinary procedure. There are many novelties in this legislation. It still has a bit to go before it can come to promulgation, but I am very satisfied that I have reached this stage through an absolutely normal procedure. So the Parliament understood the importance of these laws. I would very much like those who have been talking a lot lately about what we should do to note that we have taken steps and will continue to do so. To the teachers, parents, students, I say this: have faith, things will improve and the general context and the way the educational system will work. I am convinced that the salary of the teaching staff will also be improved, because we have to take this step in Romania”, added Iohannis.

Today was the fourth day in a row of general strike for teachers countrywide. Moreover, thousands of teachers were protesting on Thursday in Piaţa Victoriei in Bucharest. The spokesperson of the Government, Dan Cărbunaru, stated that teachers’ salaries will increase when the salary law is finalized and that until then, the Government will maintain its offer of premium cards. The response of the teachers to this offer was firm: “It is offensive. We say a resolute NO. The strike will continue.”

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