The dysfunctions that marred the
latest European Parliament elections when many Romanians living abroad were
unable to cast their ballot, in a reiteration of the 2014 presidential election
- have again attracted a lot of criticism for the ruling political force in
Romania, the Social Democratic Party, PSD.
We recall that tens of thousands
Romanians living abroad queued for hours in order to be able to exercise their
Constitutional right to vote and part of them were even unable to cast their
ballot because of the small number of polling stations and the shortage of
The situation didn't improve from
2014 in spite of the authorities' decision to double the number of polling
stations. All Romanian politicians, be they from the government, presidency or
Parliamentary parties are in favour of amending the election legislation. A
joint special committee of the Chamber of Deputies and Senate has been recently
established to draw up, amend and complete legislative election proposals.
In its first session on June 20th
the committee set July 5th as the date for the adoption of a draft
law to regulate the unfolding of the election process abroad. Representatives
of the Permanent Election Authority, the Interior Ministry, the Foreign
Ministry, the Ministry for the Romanians Abroad and the Justice Ministry have
been summoned to participate. "This committee must have a double role -
legislative and also to issue recommendations for the government to stage in
good conditions the elections in the Diaspora so that all dysfunctions may be
avoided" says Dorin Badulescu, chair of the aforementioned committee.
Postal voting as well as allowing
the election process to unfold for several days were also among the solutions
discussed by the participants. In a public statement, the country's president
Klaus Iohannis came up with several proposals. These proposals, drawn up by a
working group of the presidential administration were sent in a letter to the
Among the proposals there is the
idea of curbing red tape in the election process, increasing the number of polling
stations abroad as well as fitting these stations with the proper equipment.
The president has also referred to a series of amendments to the legislation
regarding the procedures regulating the process of closing down polling
stations or the snap elections held abroad.
According to PSD Spokesman Mihai
Fifor, there was no need for the president's intervention, because the
Social-Democrats are also interested in an improved election process. Fifor has
also announced that the Permanent Election Authority is already preparing
legislative changes. In turn, the National Liberal Party, the main political
group of the right-wing opposition, has stated its openness both to the snap
election procedures as well as to postal and electronic voting.
(translated by bill)