Regional Development Minister Resigns Among Office Deadlock

Romanian Regional Development Minister Paul Stanescu announced his resignation from the office and that of deputy-prime minister on Monday, among an ongoing conflict between the ruling coalition and President Klaus Iohannis.

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Imaginea articolului Regional Development Minister Resigns Among Office Deadlock

Regional Development Minister Resigns Among Office Deadlock

The minister issued a press release in which he stated that he did not cling on to office, and that he initially accepted the role at the behest of the ruling Social Democrat Party (PSD).

“As long as I have been in office, I did everything I could to exert my ministerial attributions with responsibility and involvement, so that no one could have anything to criticize me for,” said Stanescu.

The resignation was requested by the PSD leadership, who previously voted for his replacement from office, but the request was denied by President Klaus Iohannis.

PSD initially decided on Monday to replace eight of the current cabinet’s ministers in a government reshuffle. However, President Klaus Iohannis accepted only six of the changes and refused to appoint Lia Olguta Vasilescu as transport minister and Ilan Laufer for the regional development office, while also refusing to sign the decrees to dismiss current ministers Lucian Sova and Paul Stanescu.

On Wednesday, the ruling party decided to nominate Vasilescu for the Regional Development Ministry and party treasurer Mircea Draghici for transport, with analysts expecting a possible Constitutional crisis if the president also refuses these nominations.

Later in the day, Paul Stanescu stated that his replacement was decided politically, and that he would make his own assessment of his ministerial activity to decide if he will resign.

On Thursday, Iohannis stated that the new proposals amounted to a second reshuffle in a week and announced that he will not approve any further cabinet changes until after the national day and Centennial celebrations.

Transport Minister Lucian Sova had also previously decided to resign in an effort to end the deadlock, but will remain in office until his resignation is approved by the head of state.

According to a Constitutional Court decision, the president can only refuse nominations for a vacated office once, while the Government cannot propose an individual who was rejected a second time, though there questions on whether the principle applies to a nomination for the same office or to any office in the cabinet.

 

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