Bucharest mayor says ruling party leader approved fake news piece to discredit her

Bucharest mayor Gabriela Firea, an important member of the ruling Social Democratic Party’s leadership, launched a direct attack against party leader Liviu Dragnea on Sunday.

She accused Dragnea of instructing the ministers to block all major projects Firea had as mayor of Bucharest. She also said that the PSD leader approved a fake news piece related to Firea just to discredit her, according to Agerpres.

“My big projects have been blocked from day one. People were told: ‘Let Gabriela Firea do small projects at the City Hall, with the municipality’s money, so that she doesn’t go up too much in the polls and she doesn’t come up with claims to take over the party and run for president’,” Firea said. She added that some former ministers informed her that while the party leadership officially endorsed her projects in party meetings, after she left the room, Dragnea would tell them not to help her.

The Bucharest mayor blamed the party leader for blocking the transfer of the Bucharest ring road management from the Transport Ministry to the City Hall. She also said that the Government blocked the municipality’s attempt to take over electricity and heat provider Elcen and delayed the transfer of a land plot to the City hall for the construction of the Metropolitan Hospital. However, she said she would continue to fight for her projects, despite the consequences.

“I am convinced that many of our colleagues will wake up in the last moment and take action,” she said.

Gabriela Firea also accused Liviu Dragnea of approving a fake news piece that was highly shared in social media after she was booed on National Arena at the ceremony in which tennis stare Simona Halep presented her Roland Garros trophy to the fans. The fake post said that the anti-government protesters actually booed Simona Halep and many blamed Firea for ordering it.

“I consider that the collage was deliberately distributed – with Mr. Dragnea’s approval, or so I’ve been told by people within the party – so that I would have even more to suffer after what happened in the Arena and the scandal would be intensified,” Firea said at Romania TV. She added that the post poured gasoline on fire because it was an obvious lie and that the whole scandal played just fine for Liviu Dragnea as it discredited her and tarnished her image.

Firea made the statements in an interview at Romania TV news station one day after a tense clash within PSD’s Executive Committee meeting where the Bucharest mayor asked for the dismissal of interior minister Carmen Dan, which she considers responsible for the violent crackdown of the August 10 protest in Bucharest. The Executive Committee voted against Carmen Dan’s dismissal as the interior minister is one of Liviu Dragnea’s most trusted collaborators.

Gabriela Firea said that, despite her proposal being rejected by the Executive Committee, many colleagues within PSD sent her support messages but chose not to openly show their support. PSD leader Liviu Dragnea, who has some serious problems with the law, including two criminal convictions, has survived two attempts to remove him from the party’s helm by former prime ministers Sorin Grindeanu and Mihai Tudose. Both of them were removed from office after confronting him while Dragnea consolidated his position.

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(Photo source: Liviu Dragnea’s Facebook page)