After losing presidential race, Dăncilă resigns as party leader

Chairwoman Viorica Dăncilă announced her resignation last night, and in her place Marcel Ciolacu was appointed interim Chairman of the Social Democratic Party (PSD), Romania media reports. The announcement came after a tense, nearly six-hour meeting of the National Executive Committee (CEx) and two days after the massive defeat of Dăncilă in the second round of the presidential elections.

Apparently, Dăncilă was forced from the helm of the party by Ciolacu, while former Finance Minister Eugen Teodorovici tried to convince her not to resign. Dăncilă’s reply was surprising: “They will lynch us if we don’t leave this evening,” she said, visibly agitated, sources told G4Media.

The official statement, however, shows Dăncilă’s departure from a different angle: Before joining the committee meeting, she had already decided to announce her resignation. “I understand my colleagues’ opinion that the party needs a reset, that someone must assume responsibility for the result of the party,” she said. Along with her resignation, the current PSD leadership was dissolved.

“It’s not a moment of weakness, but a moment of dignity, and I believe I had to resign as Chairwoman of the party. It’s a gesture I made for the sake of the party. We did everything we could to obtain a good result,” Dăncilă said at the press conference following the tense meeting.

The first thing the interim PSD leader did was to choose a new secretary general and prepare to organize the congress where PSD’s new leadership will be decided.

Viorica Dăncilă challenged Klaus Iohannis in the run for Romania’s presidential seat but suffered a massive defeat in the second round of the elections last weekend. Despite losing by more than 30%, Dăncilă had said she wouldn’t resign from her position as party Chairwoman. The party members, however, were of a different opinion.

Title image: Viorica Dăncilă. Image source: ABNews

Author: István Fekete