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Ruling party general secretary Liviu Dragnea accused of electoral fraud in Romania’s referendum

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Liviu Dragnea, the general secretary of the Social Democratic Party (PSD) has been charged of corruption in the Romanian referendum case. As the coordinator of the PSD campaign, Dragnea (in picture)is suspected of having developed a national network planning to commit electoral fraud.

The Romanian National Anti-Corruption Directorate (DNA) has recently indicated that Dragnea appears to be accused of electoral bribery and violation of voting secrecy.

According to the prosecutors, Liviu Dragnea asked presidents of the electoral bureaus of the polling stations to fake votes, practice multiple voting, fake signatures and bring minors to vote. In addition, the prosecutors say Dragnea used his influence in order to obtain a minimum presence of 60 percent at the referendum and used a computer system that allowed him to get real-time data regarding the exact number of voters.

After being confronted with these accusations, Dragnea said this is clearly Romanian president Traian Basescu’s revenge.

“No one is above the law”, commented Adriean Videanu, the acting president of the Democratic Liberal Party (PDL) and a political adversary, adding that he did not know anything about the case. On the other hand, National Liberal Party (PNL) vice president Sorin Frunzaverde said that, as far as he is concerned, Dragnea is innocent. PNL and PSD are members in the ruling coalition the Social Liberal Union (USL).

The National Anti-Corruption Directorate informed at the middle of August that it was conducting an investigation regarding this matter, adding that no further details will be given. This declaration came after mayors of several rural localities in the counties of Gorj, Olt and Teleorman had said people were being questioned by prosecutors on suspicion of referendum fraud.

The power struggle began in April when the government collapsed and Traian Basescu was forced to name opposition head Victor Ponta as prime minister. In July, the Romanian Parliament voted to suspend the country’s president, but Traian Basescu survived impeachment vote and returned to the Cotroceni palace, after a month and a half suspension.

Iulia Marin

(photo source: Wikipedia)

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