Romanian president stirs controversies with the appointment of head prosecutors
Romania’s president Klaus Iohannis on Thursday, February 20, signed the decrees for the appointment of new chiefs at the General Prosecutor's Office (Gabriela Scutea), the National Anticorruption Directorate (DNA, Crin Bologa) and the Directorate for Investigating Organized Crime and Terrorism (DIICOT, Giorgiana Hosu), according to a statement from the Presidency.
The nominations were made by justice minister Cătălin Predoiu. Out of the three, only Crin Bologa (for DNA) received the endorsement of the magistrates’ body CSM while the other two received negative opinions, G4media.ro reported.
The president’s decision prompted further escalations of the tensions between the National Liberal Party (PNL), which backed the appointments, and the reformist party Save Romania Union (USR). In a press release, USR slammed PNL for disregarding the opinion issued by CSM.
“In a normal Romania, the chief prosecutors cannot be appointed without the [positive] opinion of the CSM,” USR said, adding that president Iohannis himself and PNL supported this position in the past when Social Democrat minister of justice Tudorel Toader nominated Adina Florea three times to the head of the DNA, despite the negative opinion of the CSM. The party led by Dan Barna said it would consult the European Commission about these appointments.
In his turn, PNL leader and acting prime minister Ludovic Orban argued that “the procedure was observed” since CSM issued the opinions. Orban argued that there were other cases in the past, such as when DNA head Laura Codruta Kovesi was appointed, when the negative opinion of CSM was disregarded.
President Iohannis commented that all candidates were very good and that the CSM’s opinions were rather superficial, Mediafax reported.
The most controversies are related to Giorgiana Hosu, the new head of DIICOT, whose husband was investigated for corruption in the past.
(Photo source: Presidency.ro)