Romanian President Klaus Iohannis said a planned emergency government resolution that would extend the contest period of a criminal conviction from the current 30 days to five years is blatantly unconstitutional.
“We don’t yet know what exactly the minister (Justice Minister Tudorel Toader) wants to write, but if it is what has been communicated, that is grossly unconstitutional”, Iohannis told Romanian media during a visit to Germany. There are a few principles that are recognized all over the world and set into the Constitution. One of these is that laws can only apply forward, not retroactively. If laws would apply retroactively, any government could change the entire past of the state.”
“In short, PSD (the ruling Social-Democrat Party) is attempting what is has been trying since coming to power: it is seeking solutions for its politicians with penal problems, starting with the head of the party”, Iohannis said. He is in Aachen, Germany for the signing of the new German-Frenc cooperation agreement at the invitation of Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron.
By head of the party Iohannis was referring to PSD president Viorel Dragnea, who, despite his party having won the last general elections, cannot be Prime Minister because of two convictions. Dragnea (56), an engineer by training, was convicted a suspended two-and-a-half-year sentence for electoral fraud in 2015 and to three and a half years in prison for incitement to abuse of office in 2018 – the second sentence is pending an appeal.
In a recent portrait article Financial Times described Dragnea as the “puppet master” of Romanian politics.