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Liberal head Orban: No PM replacement just because party unhappy with sacking of poorly performing minister

Mediafax
Orban Citu

Chairman of the National Liberal Party (PNL) Ludovic Orban voiced on Saturday his appreciation and support for Prime Minister Florin Citu, pointing out that the latter's decision to sack Health Minister Vlad Voiculescu was "indispensable and appropriate, laying the groundwork for an enhanced performance of the government in health care".

Orban also assured that despite this decision, the coalition carries on and the PNL is a responsible party, fully committed to Romania's development process and to the responsibility of governing, agerpres.ro confirms.

"The decision on the nomination for Prime Minister belonged to the coalition, I would even say that USR-PLUS was partial for my colleague and friend Florin Citu's taking over as Prime Minister. One cannot replace the Prime Minister just because the sacking of an evidently poorly performing minister doesn't sit well with a coalition party. (...) I was extremely delicate and refrained from criticism of one or another of the ministers, because there is a coalition spirit and we must discuss these matters among ourselves," Orban told a press conference in Baia Mare.

He added that PNL is waiting for this "bout of anger and pride" to subside and for USR-PLUS to quickly nominate a minister capable of "setting health care on track" and putting into practice the objectives set out in the governing program, including the completion of the three regional hospitals, of the severe burn hospitals and the elaboration of the national health strategy.

The PNL leader also emphasized that "it's the Prime Minister's obligation to remove from office any minister who attacks" the head of the Executive.

"Every minister must be aware that before attacking their Premier, they must write their resignation. Anyway, they must know that they will be sent home, just like Voiculescu. In no democratic country in the world does a minister allow themselves to attack the Prime Minister. The Prime Minister is the leader of the government. The moment you attack the Prime Minister, you no longer belong in the governing lineup. I therefore warn the ministers that this is not a whim. It is practically the Prime Minister's obligation to remove from office any minister who attacks the Premier," Ludovic Orban said.

Regarding the allegations by the recently sacked Health Minister, that the numbers of COVID deaths in official reports are kept lower than the real figures, the PNL leader said that Vlad Voiculescu is simply rambling, as he produced no argument for his statements and that he behaves as if he were in the opposition.

The PNL Chairman emphasized that the Prime Minister's decision to dismiss Voiculescu implied "courage, responsibility, but also risks" and asked the USR-PLUS partners, whom he considers to be "inexperienced" in terms of governance and especially coalition government, to objectively analyse this decision and admit that it was the correct thing to do.

Ludovic Orban also said that at this moment he sees no viable political formula other than the one at rule, as PSD "has trampled on Romania", and AUR is just a "political concoction".

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