Romanian NGOs in pro-Justice Minister rally

Romania Report – February 28, 2007

Bucharest, Feb. 27 – Six Romanian NGOs organized a rally to support fight against top level corruption and Justice minister Monica Macovei, whose resignation is asked by the Parliament.
The protest was led by the ‘Group for Social Dialogue’, the’ Romanian Academic Society’, ‘Freedom House Romania’, the ‘Offensive Group’, human rights group ‘APADOR CH’ and the ‘Academy of Advocacy’.
The event took place in front of the National Theatre in Bucharest in the afternoon.
The rally occurred days after the Senate asked for Mrs. Macovei’s resignation by passing an opposition-supported motion that lured the vote of some MPs of the governing coalition. The Constitutional Court ruled that the motion has no power to sack the justice minister.
The speakers – mostly local progressive intellectuals such as Radu Filipescu, Alina Mungiu-Pippidi, Andrei Oisteanu, Ana Blandiana and Traian Ungureanu – condemned the attempt to stop reforms in the judiciary system by the former-communists (now turned into oligarchs).
“Actually, we are defending the justice in Romania. Today, the justice is represented by Monica Macovei. We do not want our country to be stolen by few oligarchs in the Parliament. We are powerful and they (i.e. the oligarchs) fear us, as they fear early polls and the referendum (asked by President Basescu),” Traian Ungureanu said.
Alina Mungiu-Pippidi, leader of the’ Romanian Academic Society’, said: “What we ask is that the National Integrity Agency’s bill passes in the form proposed by the civil society. We want to let justice act freely.”
Tomorrow, the Social-Democrat and ultra-nationalist ‘Greater Romania Party’ MPs in opposition would try to vote a motion meant to impeach President Basescu for allegedly trespassing his Constitutional attributions.
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