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UPDATE Deputy PM Barna requests coalition emergency meeting, discussions about withdrawing confidence in PM Citu

Inquam Photos / George Calin
Dan Barna

The Deputy Prime Minister Dan Barna requested on Wednesday an emergency coalition meeting in order to discuss the withdrawal of confidence in Prime Minister Florin Citu.

"We are requesting an emergency coalition meeting in order to have a responsible dialogue with (PNL's chairman) Ludovic Orban and (UDMR's chairman) Kelemen Hunor, to discuss the withdrawal of confidence in Prime Minister Florin Citu," Barna declared, in Parliament, agerpres.ro confirms.

"We are requesting an emergency meeting, today or tomorrow at the latest (...) to discuss the solution through which USR (Save Romania Union) PLUS (Party of Liberty, Unity and Solidarity) wishes to keep responsibility alongside PNL (National Liberal Party) and UDMR (Hungarian Democratic Union of Romania), (...) regarding what Romania means after the crisis and what a Romania that is starting to get better might mean. The fact that we have been sitting around for weeks for a political ballet, without seeing support from the Prime Minister, is a very dramatic problem which we mean to clarify within the coalition. And I am saying that because reproaches are being addressed to Vlad Voiculescu which he never had under control," Barna said.

He criticized the way the anti-COVID vaccination campaign developed, reminding that this is under the direct coordination of Prime Minister Florin Citu.

"The vaccination campaign is decided by the Prime Minister of the Romanian Government and the fact that we are placed among the last, 25 out of 27, at EU level, given that we started very well and we were among the top during the first days shows neither performance nor strategic wisdom. But, from this perspective, a discussion within the coalition is very important," Dan Barna said.

The Deputy Prime Minister said that revoking the Minister of Health, Vlad Voiculescu, is a "unilateral decision", "politically immature", which "raises questions" regarding Prime Minister Florin Citu's ability to run a "functional coalition" during this period.

According to him, revoking Vlad Voiculescu is a decision which throws the governing coalition into a "major" crisis.

"It is a decision by which, as of this moment, Prime Minister Florin Citu no longer has the support of the USR PLUS Alliance. Vlad Voiculescu, since day one, started a fight with the corrupt and tick-infested health system, a very complex battle, and I saw the very vehement and harsh reactions and the media lynching which targeted him in the last weeks. The transparency of the act of governing, carrying out procedures for building new hospitals, contests at the Health Houses are all actions taken at the Ministry of Health which hit a very large blockage," Barna also said.

The Deputy Prime Minister added that the announcement on Wednesday morning, according to which he would follow to take on the interim at the Ministry of Health, was also "a unilateral decision", taken without being asked, him or USR PLUS.

"It is a decision which again confirms immaturity and lack of political wisdom. I discussed with the president of Romania and we will find a solution", he indicated.

Dan Barna mentioned that the Prime Minister has the right to evaluate the ministers' performance, but revoking Voiculescu "is based on no evaluation".

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