Basescu: Judiciary reform must continue

President Traian Basescu told Parliament on Tuesday that judiciary reform must continue in Romania and that he is counting on magistrates as well as parliamentarians in this process.

‘Although we managed to avoid the safeguarding clause in 2009, we were left with the mechanism for cooperation and verification of the European Commission. We must continue to reform the judiciary. Together with judges, prosecutors and each man in the judiciary as well as with Parliament we will certainly succeed,’ said Basescu.

The President remarked that during the five years of his tenure he worked well with the Government to de-politicise the prosecution offices, arguing that courthouses are the places where procedure tergiversation and blockage occur.

He said he constantly asked Government to adopt reforms for the judiciary, saying that the National Anti-Corruption Directorate (DNA) has sent to court 20 former or incumbent MP ministers since 2005 from all political parties, but the courts have not issued any final sentences.

He also said the DNA results, that were also mentioned in the latest report of the European Commission report on Romania’s progress with reforming its judiciary, and the overall change in the attitude of prosecution offices to the political power and the consequences of the introduction of the obligation for high-level public officers, dignitaries and magistrates to publicly state their personal wealth and interests are some of the elements that sets apart radically the current situation from what used to be five years ago, when he took over office.

The President said that a highlight in his tenure was the official condemnation of communism, which was decried as an illegitimate and criminal regime.
He also levelled criticism for the non-completion of the cases involving court files on the December 1989 Revolution.

‘There is just one truth: there were a revolution and miners’ riots that left 1,600 people dead, yet there are no culprits. This huge injustice has to be righted all the more so as it is 20 years since the Revolution and we have no clear answer.
I am not asking the judiciary to rule one way or the other, but that it rules somehow, because that is their obligation and a huge duty to those who gave their life for us to live free that has to be met,’ said Basescu.

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