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Romanian president taps EU lawmaker to be country's first female PM

Europe
17.01.2018
By our dpa-correspondent and Europe Online    auf Facebook posten  Auf Twitter posten  
Bucharest (dpa) - Romanian President Klaus Iohannis has nominated Viorica Dancila, a member of European Parliament and prominent campaigner for women‘s rights, to be the country‘s new prime minister.

Dancila, a member of Romania‘s Social Democrats (PSD), would become Romania‘s first female head of government and the third to take the post since elections in December 2016.

Party infighting - particularly with PSD chief Liviu Dragnea - led former prime minister Mihai Tudose to quit on Monday after around six months in office. His predecessor, Sorin Grindeanu, also lasted only six months in the job.

Dancila, a lawmaker in Brussels since 2009, heads the Social Democrat Women‘s organization. She is seen as an ally of Dragnea, who is unable to become prime minister because of a conviction for electoral fraud. The party chief is under investigation for corruption in two separate cases. 

Iohannis, an outspoken critic of corruption and of Dragnea, agreed to designate Dancila on Wednesday despite opposition protests, saying that the move was dictated by "parliament arithmetic" - that is, by the majority the PSD controls with its Liberal allies.

Last month the Romanian parliament passed reforms to the country‘s justice system that critics say watered down the powers of state prosecutors.

The reform laws have not yet been signed into law by Iohannis.

A year ago, nationwide protests forced the PSD and Dragnea to abandon a bill which would have allowed convicted people from occupying high offices.

 

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