Talks about potential reshuffle in the ruling coalition. PSD mentions early elections if rotating PM is not enforced

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The ruling coalition might consider the reshuffle of some incumbent ministers in the Ciuca Cabinet, with Vasile Dincu, Defence minister and Sorin Cimpeanu, Education minister, on the reshuffling list.

PSD chairman Marcel Ciolacu said on Tuesday that there will be a discussion in the Coalition about the change of some ministers in the Government. “I am firmly convinced that at some point there will be a reshuffle,” said Ciolacu.

“I said from the start that if we want to have a normal coalition, these things come from the prime minister (ed. reshuffle proposal) after an evaluation of the activity. I firmly believe that at some point there will be a reshuffle. We will have a more applied discussion within the coalition”, said the PSD leader.

Asked by journalists if the PSD Minister of Defense, Vasile Dîncu, could also be found among the reshuffled ministers, Ciolacu said that he did not want to give “this news on TV”.

The PSD president also referred to the Minister of Energy, Virgil Popescu, when he explained PSD’s intentions to propose the regulation of energy prices in the Coalition. “The energy policy in a country is made by the Minister of Energy. We made another big mistake. This year’s energy has been sold. I would not like us to reach a conflict in the coalition, but we need a regulation on the domestic area where we can cover from our own production. We will see”, Ciolacu said. “It is normal that we raise the issue in the coalition. I assume that the prime minister has an evaluation grid”, the PSD leader also said.

At the last ministers’ assessment in early July, PM Nicolae Ciuca said that he will not operate any reshuffles, as “stability of the team provides the guarantee that we’ll act responsibly”.

Education minister Sorin Cîmpeanu is also on the list of ministers under discussion for a future reshuffle, according to Edupedu.ro sources. “The decision of President Klaus Iohannis is awaited, but at the level of the PNL and the Government, there is a distancing from Cîmpeanu, because of the draft education laws”, a source close to Cotroceni told Edupedu.ro.

Other voices quoted by G4Media.ro said that the President’s main source of discontent was PM Nicolae Ciuca’s vulnerability in the PhD plagiarism affair, especially that Ciuca is seen as the main PNL candidate running for Presidency, endorsed by President Iohannis.

More precisely, Ciucă’s plagiarism strongly re-entered the public discussion in mid-July, with the launch in public debate of the education law projects that provide for three ways to protect plagiarists: the abolition of the National Council for Attesting Titles, Diplomas and Certificates (CNATDCU) – the key institution in solving plagiarism in PhDs -, the possibility of giving up free and without motivation for the doctorate by any plagiarist and plagiarism amnesty after 3 years.

According to Edupedu.ro sources, Iohannis would have explicitly rejected the amnesty for plagiarists, in a discussion in Cotroceni before the launch of the draft laws in public debate, so that the amnesty would be maintained by Cîmpeanu in the draft put into public debate.

Ciolacu an the rotating PM: If it’s not done, there is no other option than snap elections

The Social Democrats rule out continuing the collaboration with PNL in the ruling coalition unless their PM is named in rotation, said the PSD chairman Marcel Ciolacu.

“If the rotation is not done, there is no other option than early elections”, said the PSD leader, saying that he does not want to comment on statements made “as one wakes up on the beach to give news on TV”.

Ciolacu added that the protocol of the coalition with PNL is clear and stipulates that starting next year the prime minister will return to PSD. Asked if he wants to be prime minister, Ciolacu replied that “it’s an honor to be prime minister, it’s not by will”, the party leaders having the last word in this regard.

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