The Party “People’s Will” considers the consultative referendum of February 24 is an illegal and undemocratic exercise and represents very expensive advertising for the Democratic Party at the expense of the people. The Party “Democracy at Home” calls on the voters from the diaspora not to take part in the referendum so as not to lose time and more Moldovans who are abroad could vote in the parliamentary elections. It also calls upon the voters from the country to write the word “union” on the ballots for the referendum. The Professionals’ Movement “Speranța-Nadejda” is for reducing the number of MPs, but is against the recalling of MPs and urges the voters to write “we want capital punishment for corrupt MPs” on the second ballot for the plebiscite. The positions were stated by candidates of the three parties in the public debate “Elections 2019: Please elect me MP because...”, which was the 103rd installment of the series “Developing political culture through public debates” staged by IPN News Agency.
Teodor Cârnaț, of the Party “People’s Will”, said the Democratic Party campaigns through this referendum that costs the people about 10 million lei. From constitutional viewpoint, the most important problems of society, such as the banking fraud, the exodus of the population and genocide, can be put up for a referendum, including the subject of Moldova’s union with Romania. The party pleads for referendums, but not for those purposed by the PDM as the effects of the consultative referendum are equal to zero. The Constitution provides that the decision adopted by the people in the referendum has supreme legal force, while the consultative referendum of February 24, 2019 has no legal force.
Teodor Cârnaț reminded of the consultative referendum of 1999 organized by the then President Petru Luchinski. The people in this were asked if they want the Republic of Moldova to be governed by a presidential regime. The people said ‘yes’, but Parliament overnight amended the Constitution and the parliamentary regime of government was introduced. It was later shown that the modification was unconstitutional. The reduction in the number of MPs from 101 to 61 will affect first of all representativeness as Parliament is not an enterprise that abides by the principle that the decrease in the number of employees generates savings. Democracy costs and an optimal number of MPs is needed to have a representative Parliament. The recalling of MPs is an artificial and populist issue.
According to the candidate, similar initiatives to reduce the number of MPs were earlier proposed by the Party of Socialists and the bloc ACUM. The Democratic Party plagiarized the idea as it realized this is popular with the people. If this party wanted to organize a constitutional referendum, it could have done it since 2016. The people in the referendum of February 24 should vote ‘against‘ so as to show to the current government that it cannot play with the people’s will.
Anatol Ursu, of the Party “Democracy at Home”, noted the referendum is an ingenious campaign idea of the PDM. They call on the voters from Moldova to write “union” on both of the ballots for the referendum so as to see how many people want the union. As it is a consultative referendum, the people should be consulted on a problem that is really of interest to them, not on invented problems proposed by the PDM.
Anatol Ursu noted the citizens from the diaspora should not take these ballots. In the previous elections, the voters at polling places established abroad had to stay in lines for 3-5 hours to vote and didn’t manage to at a time when they had only one ballot to cast. Now there will be four ballots and the period of time needed to vote will be thus four times longer.
Andrei Donică, of the Professionals’ Movement “Speranța-Nadejda”, said that even if the Democratic Party wants to promote its image, the Movement is in favor of reducing the number of MPs as 101 MPs is a too large number given the decrease in the number of citizens in the country. Currently, at most seven MPs and party leaders decide in Parliament, while the rest do what their parties decide.
As to the possibility of recalling MPs, Andrei Donică said this is fiction as the MPs are not afraid of a recall because they bank on corruption instruments and schemes. That’s why capital punishment should be imposed on the corrupt MPs. However, most of the politicians would not vote for this. “We call on the voters to write “capital punishment for corrupt MPs” on the ballot concerning the recall,” stated the candidate.
The participants on the debate formulated messages intended for the voters, explaining why the people should vote them
“We are a group of young people who came from the civic environment. We have struggled for over ten years on unionist barricades and decided to run on the list of a party so as to take the unionist message to Moldova’s Parliament and our slogan in these elections is “Without exes”. This means without ex-ministers, ex-Cabinet members. We are a young team that comes with pragmatic projects designed to bring the Republic of Moldova closer to Romania as during 27 years we have been told that it is not the right moment and all kinds of national, local or regional heroes promise us that the time of the union will come later,” noted Anatol Ursu.
Andrei Donică called on the voters to support his team that is under No. 12 on the ballot and runs with the slogan “Stop the genocide”. “Why? Because we already struggle to stop the genocide and will continue to do so even if we do not enter Parliament. If you have relatives and acquaintances who are pensions, invalids, children young than 18 tell them to come to the address 26/1 Zelinski St, office 1. Come and we will offer you free legal advice and will go to court to obtain the minimum subsistence level of 2,072 lei. We will reach the ECHR and will definitely win,” stated the candidate.
“We founded a political party in order to bring an alternative so that you do not say after elections that you didn’t have who to vote for. You can now vote for parties that had been in power, but that have never been interested in the country’s independence, human rights and territorial integrity. We, the Party “People’s Will”, come from among the people and will work for the people, Our voice will be your voice in the Parliament of the Republic of Moldova. Most of the members of the Party “People’s Will” showed it in the posts they held and proved that they can speak in the name of the people despite the risk of being deprived of freedom. You can now make a correct choice so as to have an envoy in Parliament who will represent the people,” stated Teodor Cârnaț.
The Party of Regions was also invited to the February 4 debate, but this delegated no representative to take part.
The contestants are invited to the electoral debates held by IPN Agency in accordance with the order in which they were registered by the Central Election Commission. The debate on January 30 involved representatives of the electoral bloc ACUM, the Party of Communists and the Party of Socialists. The Democratic Party didn’t respond to the invitation to attend the debate. Representatives of the Shor Party, the People’s Movement Antimafie, the Our Party and the National Liberal Party took part in the January 31 debate.
Candidates of the Ecologist Green Party and the Liberal Party are to attend the debate scheduled for February 5.
The series of debates “Elections 2019: Please elect me MP because...”, forms part of the series of public debates held by IPN News Agency as part of the project “Developing political culture through public debates” that is supported by the Hanns Seidel Foundation of Germany.