Presidency spokesperson, Mădălina Dobrovolschi, has announced Monday morning, at Cotroceni Palace, in a press statement, that President Klaus Iohannis has signed the decree to revoke the National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA) chief prosecutor Laura Codruţa Kovesi in line with the Constitutional Court decision.
“The President of Romania, Mr. Klaus Iohannis, considers that Romania cannot make steps back from the statute of country governed by the rule of law, in which the supremacy of the Constitution is observed. In Romania, the fight against corruption must not be diminished or blocked in any way. On the contrary, it must continue. None of the institutions involved in the fight against corruption should be subject to pressures or attempts to discredit it.
President Klaus Iohannis emphasizes that Romania is and must remain a state of the rule of law. The rule of law, as well as genuine democracy, is manifested day by day, through the decision and the choice of each citizen to respect, above all, the Constitution and the laws of this country. A deviation from this principle would mean, in fact, a blow and a weakening of the rule of law,” the Presidency Spokeswoman said.
“In a state governed by the rule of law, the rulings by the Constitutional Court must all be complied to. It is precisely for this reason that the constitutional judges have the tremendous responsibility that, in ensuring the supremacy of the Constitution, they should not ignore its spirit, which is based on the democratic traditions of the Romanian people and on the ideals of the 1989 Revolution.
However, the Constitutional Court’s rulings must be respected and enforced not only by the President of Romania, but by the ruling majority politicians, a majority that decides the legislative changes with a major impact on the rule of law.
By Decision no. 358/2018 the Constitutional Court has decided, and I quote here: The President of Romania is to issue the decree of dismissal of the chief prosecutor of the National Anticorruption Directorate, Mrs. Laura Codruta Kovesi.
The President of Romania, Mr. Klaus Iohannis, has constantly stated that he respects the Constitution and the laws of the country and has acted permanently in this respect. Therefore, for enforcing the Constitutional Court’s decision no. 358/2018, the President of Romania, Klaus Iohannis, has signed today the decree revoking Mrs. Laura Codruta Kövesi from the office of DNA chief prosecutor.
The President of Romania, Klaus Iohannis, emphasizes that the fight against corruption must not, in any case, be abandoned or slowed down. Corruption affects the lives of every citizen and the development of Romania. Public money cannot be used for personal or group purposes, and the misappropriation of public resources and the blocking of anti-corruption fight translate into lack of hospitals, schools, motorways, and efficient public administration.
The President of Romania, Mr. Klaus Iohannis, points out that regardless of the name of the chief prosecutor of the National Anticorruption Directorate, this institution has the obligation to continue its activity in a professional way at the highest level of performance,” spokesperson Mădălina Dobrovolschi has announced on Monday.
The Constitutional Court of Romania (CCR) published on June 7 on its website the reasoning of the ruling on a constitutional conflict between the Justice Ministry and the Presidency over dismissing the DNA chief prosecutor Laura Codruta Kovesi. The ruling also said that President Iohannis must sign the decree to recall Kovesi from office. The reasoning was encompassed in a 133-page document and was published by the Official Journal.
„One of the conditions to achieve the fundamental goals of the Romanian state is also represented by the good functioning of the public authorities, with observing the principles of the separation and balance of the powers, without institutional deadlocks. At the same time, article 146, line e of the Constitution does not give the CCR only the role to acknowledge the constitutional legal conflicts, but also to solve these conflicts,” the Court’s reasoning reads.
The constitutional judges thus explained why they had also announced what actions were to be taken to end this conflict, namely asking the head of state to recall the DNA chief prosecutor.
Justice Minister’s approach
Justice Minister Tudorel Toader announced on February 22 he initiates the procedures to dismiss the National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA) chief, Laura Codruta Kovesi, for “acts and deeds incompatible to a state of law”.
”Under the provisions of article 54, paragraph 4 in conjunction with 51 (2) (b) of Law 303/2004 on the Status of Judges and Prosecutors, I initiate the procedure for the dismissal of the DNA chief prosecutor. The report, accompanied by the proposal to revoke the DNA Chief Prosecutor, will be forwarded to the Superior Council of Magistracy (CSM) and to the President of Romania to analyze and decide in accordance with the constitutional competencies,” Tudorel Toader said.