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Republic of Moldova: Constitutional Court suspends some of president Igor Dodon’s prerogatives

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The Constitutional Court of Republic of Moldova decided on Tuesday, following the examination of a complaint made by a group of Democratic Party deputies, to suspend some of president Igor Dodon’s attributions on appointing ministers, Unimedia website informs.

The Court said “the president is not able to carry out his mandate because of his deliberate refusal to exert his constitutional obligation.”

The decision was made when Igor Dodon rejected for the second time candidacies to the positions of ministers suggested by the government.

The presidential prerogatives will be taken over by Andrian Candu, the president of Parliament.

The latter will issue decrees appointing the seven new ministers: Svetlana Cebotari, the minister of health, labour and social protection, Alexandru Tanase, the minister of justice, Iurie Leanca - deputy premier for European integration,  Chiril Gaburici, the minister of economy, Cristina Lesnic, deputy premier for reintegration, Liviu Volconovici, the minister of agriculture and Tudor Ulianovschi, the foreign minister.

Igor Dodon declared on Tuesday, when some of his prerogatives were suspended, that the decision of the Constitutional Court was “uninspired” and the members of the Court “accepted to play as the democratic government dictated.”

“These ministers enter government through the back door, lacking legitimacy and credibility. Through today’s decision the Court went to the grey area of democracy and of the rule of law. The Court has reconfirmed its image of docile political instrument, not of constitutional body. It is a dishonouring and regrettable fall for a state which wants to be democratic. I decided not to give in rather than explain why I appointed some compromised ministers. The good side of the story is that the government will be again compromised in the citizens’ eyes. That will be a disadvantage in this election year,” Dodon wrote on Facebook.

The Democratic Party announced, at the end of December, that 7 of the 13 government members would be replaced.

Vlad Plahotniuc, the DP leader said the government would be represented by technocrats, in order to get more independence. By mid October, the Constitutional Court said the president of Moldova has the right to check whether a candidate proposed by the premier corresponded for a position, but has no veto right against the premier’s suggestion.

Later on, Eugen Sturza’s investment in the position of defence minister was made by Andrian Candu, the Parliament president when Igor Dodon was temporarily suspended by the Constitutional Court.

According to the Constitution of Moldova, the president’s deliberate refusal to fulfil his constitutional obligation of appointing the premier’s repeated proposal was a serious infringement of his constitutional obligations and can be considered a situation in which the president cannot exert his attributions. Therefore, the Parliament president or the premier replaces the president of the country in such situations.

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