Romanian entrepreneur announces 'burial' of one-meter highway built to protest poor infrastructure
Entrepreneur Ștefan Mandachi announced he "buried" the one-meter highway he built in 2019 to protest the lack of modern road infrastructure in the region of Moldova, saying he cannot think of any more ways to pressure the authorities to do their duty.
"Today, March 15, 2021, I 'buried' the highway since I cannot find any more solutions or resuscitation means. I cannot come up with any more ideas to put pressure on the elected to do their duty," he explained in a Facebook post.
The highway segment was covered up, but a museum dedicated to the project remains open on site to anyone interested.
In the two years since the start of the protest, the region still doesn't have any highways, Mandachi explained. "As it happened in the past 31 years, it still takes seven hours to get from Suceava to Bucharest. Just as from Suceava to Cluj, the capital of Transylvania, the road is difficult, not one millimeter of highway. Absolutely nothing changed. It is terrible to drive, and the dangers are the same, maybe even greater (we have more cars)," he said.
1. Astăzi, 15 martie 2021, ora 15.00 se împlinesc pe muchie, doi ani de la PROTESTUL ”România vrea autostrăzi! Șîeu”,...Posted by Ștefan Mandachi on Monday, March 15, 2021
The entrepreneur also said that Romanians do not know how to protest and argued that strong protests would have pressured the authorities into acting. "If Romanians wanted highways, they would have had them! They would have fought for them. […] What is the point of the trouble with highways if we don't want them that badly? My conclusion: we are too rooted in our comfort zone to use the constitutional right to protest. We do not know how to use our rights. We don't know how to protest! And we don't want to learn either…"
Mandachi, who is the owner of the biggest Romanian fast-food chain – Spartan, inaugurated the highway on March 15, 2019. He also made a documentary about the country's road infrastructure. Titled 30 Years and 15 Minutes - 30/15, it is available for viewing here.
(Photo: Ștefan Mandachi Facebook Page)