Dacian Ciolos forms Romanian government

Parliament committees confirm technocrat ministers while nomination of Cristina Guseth as minister of justice withdrawn

Photo by: AP
Photo by: AP

Dacian Ciolos.

After he proposed her as minister of justice on Tuesday, Romanian Prime Minister-Designate Dacian Ciolos withdrew his nomination of anti-corruption expert Cristina Guseth, as he formed new Romanian government.

Cristina Guseth has worked for the European Commission in Bucharest and has been the leader of pro-democracy group Freedom House's Romanian branch.

Eventhough parliament’s legal committee had confirmed Guseth overnight, according to the statement of Prime Minister Dacian Ciolos via Facebook, Ciolos decided to eliminate Guseth as candidate for minister of justice due to some critics' complaints that she had been poorly prepared for her parliamentary hearings.  

She later admitted to some reporters that she got especially stuck when she was asked about the MPs' immunity, she felt as if she was sitting in an exam and was lost for words. 

“In order to avoid damaging trust in the government's justice minister, during a year of great importance for maintaining the credibility of judicial activity, I decided to withdraw my proposal of Cristina Guseth for this portfolio. In the morning, I will submit another proposal to the parliament,” Dacian Ciolos wrote on his Facebook at night.


Ciolos instead nominated Raluca Pruna, who is a former lawyer and leader of the Romanian branch of the global anti-corruption watchdog Transparency International and works at the European Commission in Brussels.

Pruna began fielding questions from the members of parliament on Tuesday and was expected to face a vote of confidence, together with the other ministers in the cabinet, later in the day.

Corruption is an unresolved political issue in Romania and will become a big difficulty for the next government. Ciolos' predecessor Victor Ponta has resigned two weeks ago due to protests over nightclub fire and facing charges of forgery and money laundering.

Ciolos announced his technocrat cabinet on Sunday and told European Union experts, diplomats and civil society leaders that they were all in for one-year-term.

"I wanted my ministers to be professional in their fields, honest and open to dialogue’’ he said.

Ciolos also withdrew another proposal, following the announcement of the cabinet’s structure on Sunday. Andrei Baciu, 29, who was proposed for the health minister position has been harshly criticised over some photos of Baciu posing in underwear as a model started to go about on Facebook. 

A former member of the European Commission, Dacian Ciolos's cabinet has 22 ministers, seven of whom being female.

Local elections are scheduled in Romania in the first half of 2016, followed by parliamentary elections in December.

TRTWorld and agencies