Ex-prime minister and former convict Vlad Filat returns as PLDM president

The Liberal Democratic Party of Moldova (PLDM) held its national convention this past Sunday to re-elect Vald Filat as the party’s president after a 5-year hiatus.

Filat’s candidacy was endorsed by 214 out of 215 delegates, including by the outgoing president Tudor Deliu.

In his speech, Deliu talked about the party’s hardships in the last few years. “Given the conditions that surrounded our activity, our goals at the minimum have been to keep the flame burning, to keep our people together, to assure them that everything will be alright, that PLDM deserves to become again the locomotive of European integration, and it will,” said Deliu.

Among the party’s achievements during his presidentship, Tudor Deliu mentioned the increase in the number of PLDM territorial organizations, from 9 to 26, and the results shown in the 2019 local elections. “To the surprise of our adversaries, who considered us as good as dead, and in spite of all the polls that didn’t even mention us, we showed a good result in the latest local elections. We polled 6% nationally, thus becoming the fourth most influential political force in Moldova,” declared Deliu.

Addressing the PLDM convention, Vlad Filat thanked the delegates for their trust and all the party members for their patience and resoluteness displayed in the last five years. “I am sorry that during my previous terms (as PLDM president) I didn’t do enough to protect the party and our members. But I’ve learned my lessons. (...) I wanted to make sure that the decision of my comeback to the PLDM leadership belongs to the entire party, to all of our colleagues. I’m not returning into a position, I’m returning into a great responsibility,” stated Filat.

The convention culminated with the adoption of a resolution stating PLDM’s intention of participating in the upcoming presidential election and in the future legislative elections. The Lib-Dems also stated their decision to relaunch their European Integration Country Project. 

Vlad Filat led PLDM from the party’s inception in 2008 and until his jailing in 2015 on charges of grand corruption. He had pleaded not guilty, deploring his imprisonment as political vendetta and scapegoating orchestrated by his rival, the former Democratic Party leader Vlad Plahotniuc. In December 2019, Filat was released on parole under a compensatory mechanism that allows for reducing jail terms due to poor detention conditions. 

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