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Chairman of the Social Democratic Party, Marcel Ciolacu: No negotiations whatsoever between PSD and President Iohannis on gov't formation

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Marcel Ciolacu

Chairman of the Social Democratic Party (PSD) and Chamber of Deputies Speaker Marcel Ciolacu declared on Tuesday that there had been no negotiations whatsoever between the Social Democrats and President Klaus Iohannis on the formation of the government, which is exclusively the result of talks between the political parties.

Ciolacu also stressed that unlike the National Liberal Party, the PSD has no "partnership" with President Iohannis.

"We didn't negotiate at all with the President of Romania, there was absolutely no negotiation. We had no discussion until we outlined [the government]. (...) Personally I had no negotiation and I don't think any of my colleagues has had either. Did I need to talk to the President for us to see that there are three major crises in Romania? I didn't fight the President, let him keep on fighting, I have no problem with that. I say this again, I don't have foes, only political opponents. Mr. Iohannis was indeed an opponent and he remains an opponent of the PSD. If he changes his rhetoric and approach to the PSD, things will change. I expected the President to no longer get involved after the start of his second term in office," the PSD Chairman said on broadcaster TVR 1.

The Social Democrat leader voiced his hope to see President Iohannis embrace his constitutional role as a factor of unification.

"Maybe in these final three years of his presidential term he becomes the President of Romania and everyone sees to their responsibilities alone. Constitutionally, appointing the Prime Minister is the President's job. Each of us has seen to their duties. We negotiated with the political parties, neither me, nor any party colleague have negotiated the formation of the government with the President of Romania," Ciolacu underscored.

Asked how is a PNL - PSD cooperation possible when they were "antagonistic" parties, Ciolacu said that "they still are", and gave the example of rival football teams which work together when they play in the national team.

Ciolacu expressed his hope that Prime Minister Nicolae Ciuca will be "the binding element between the Liberal and the Social Democrat ministers".

"Mr. Ciuca is the Prime Minister of Romania, he is not the Prime Minister of either the PNL or the PSD. Just as I would have liked President Klaus Iohannis to act as the President of all Romanians, regardless of whether they voted for him or not. I still hope that we will enter a normal Romania, as promised (...) I like the Prime Minister's approach. It is a correct approach and Nicolae Ciuca sends a message to the entire government team: this is how we work in the Romanian government," Ciolacu said.

The PSD leader also mentioned that the current coalition is condemned to govern until 2024.

"At this moment we have a stable government. (...) It's not enough for this government to be stable, it must also be efficient. I made a concession about the Prime Minister and accepted that Mr. Ciuca serve in the first rotation. I think I did right. You cannot stand aside, it was the right decision at a difficult time Romania was having - with an economic, a health and a political crisis all at once. (...) I did not change my mind. [The previous] was a disastrous government," Marcel Ciolacu also said.

AGERPRES

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