Political class in Moldova remembers diaspora only in electoral period. IPN debate

The Moldovan diaspora plays a very important role in the life of the Republic of Moldova. This supports the economy by enormous remittances that it sends home. Nevertheless, the political class of Moldova does nothing for the people who left to return home and remembers them only in the electoral period, said participants in the public debate “Elections 2019: Please elect me MP on behalf of the Eastern diaspora because...”, which was the 105th installment of the series of debates “Developing political culture through public debates” staged by IPN News Agency.

Dumitru Pogorea, independent candidate in single-member constituency No. 49, said the representatives of the diaspora are the people’s diplomats of the Republic of Moldova abroad as they represent the Moldovan culture, traditions and customs in foreign countries. The Moldovans who left fill pain when the see what is going on in the native country. If he enters Parliament, he would like to form a section of the diaspora. The Bureau for Diaspora Relations should not form part of the State Chancellery, but should be a separate subdivision with special powers that would work more intensely with the diaspora. When he becomes an MP, he would create conditions for large stores to be opened in foreign towns where only Moldovan products would be sold. This way, jobs and revenues in Moldova’s budget would be ensured.

According to the candidate, those from the diaspora during the past year transferred over US$ 1 billion to Moldova and this is essential support for the state budget. At the same time, it is not right for the aspirants for a seat of MP to be unable to use own financial resources in the election campaign without opening an account in Moldova as this should be opened in Moldova and the money should be used in other countries, including for campaigning. Trying to solve this problem, he permanently met with obstacles in Moldova. The lawmakers didn’t even work out the mechanism for using the given money.

Nicolae Pascaru, the representative of Gheorghii Para, who runs in single-member constituency No. 49 on behalf of the Party of Socialists, said the citizens of Moldova exist owing to the diaspora, those hardworking people who had to leave the country after this genocide staged by the government against the own people. The pension of €45 and the paltry salary of 3,000 lei in Moldova are not enough by far. The people went abroad, but time has come for them to return home. The Head of State created a department at the Presidential Office and has a representative for the diaspora who receives applications to help people who are abroad.

“We must have a separate budget for the diaspora so that this promotes our culture like the Department for Romanians Everywhere. We must have a Department for Moldovans Everywhere. We will do our best to improve the living standards in our country so that the people return home. In Siberia there are Moldovan villages and the people who live there do not want to return as they say it is better there. We will do our utmost to change the corrupt government so that the Socialists rule as they deserve it,” noted Nicolae Pascaru.

Valery Klimenko, who runs in in single-member constituency No. 49 on behalf of the Shor Party, said the labor migration that involves a large number of people is a catastrophe for Moldova’s economy. Many of those who left want to return home, but understand that if they do it, they will face problems in employment, with salaries and in maintaining the family. Even so, a large number of people are ready to return if particular problems are solved. The Shor Party analyzed these problems and designed a program to bring the migrants home.

“This program has been implemented in Orhei for a year. In the period, it brought home about 100 families. These were attracted by the conditions proposed by the administration of the town, such as payment of the customs costs when transporting their property to Moldova from foreign countries, offering of a complete social package and of a lump-sum to each family member, sparing of local taxes. We also help them to start businesses if they want. They use the social stores and drugstores. During a year all these benefits enable them to save up to an €2,000. We want this program to work nationwide and will propose it in Parliament,” stated the candidate.

As to the way in which the election campaign takes place in constituency No. 49, Valery Klimenko said he faces difficulties here as the constituencies in Moldova usually comprise one or several districts and this enables having meetings with citizens in each village. In the case of his constituency, this is practically impossible physically. Also, most of the people whom he already met said the promises made by politicians in election campaigns have been the same for 30 years and they for the first time see a running party, the Shor Party, doing something and then wanting to do the same as in Orhei all over the country.

Vladimir Bolea, the representative of Dorin Frăsîneanu, who runs in single-member constituency No. 49 on behalf of the electoral bloc ACUM, Platform PAS and DA, said Dorin Frăsîneanu has been a member of the diaspora since 2010, when he started to study at the lyceum. After Moldova declared its independence, an incorrect attitude to the diaspora appeared. This is treated only in statistical terms. “In Moldova, the politicians remember the diaspora only in the pre-electoral campaign and stage concerts for this and travel abroad, but then forget again about the Moldovans aboard, who are left to cope alone in the host countries, and this is inadmissible. We consider Dorin Frăsîneanu will be a very good representative of the diaspora in the next Parliament, with a very powerful team behind,” he said.

According to Vladimir Bolea, the team of ACUM will do so that all Moldova’s embassies abroad really build a relationship with the Moldovan citizens who are outside their country. The communication of politicians with the diaspora through the agency of diaspora associations should be eliminated. Policies that would include the citizens there should be worked out so that these feel citizens of the Republic of Moldova, that they enjoy the rights to vote, to be consulted and to decide the country’s future. All the citizens should be equal before the law.

Vladimir Bolea noted that a number of countries were included in constituency No. 49 and the candidate should be a very rich person to be able to fly from one region of the world to another to meet with voters. The state should think about this aspect and take attitude so as not only to minimize an electoral process, but to also create conditions for these candidates to be able to meet with voters.

IPN Agency invited to the debate all the seven candidates running in this constituency, but the representatives of contenders Ina Sîrbu of the Democratic Party of Moldova, Nicolae Țîpovici of the Our Party and independent candidate Igor Ticuș informed that these cannot take part and cannot  delegate representatives mainly because they perform electoral activities in the constituency.

Constituency No. 49 Eastwards Moldova covers 11 states where there will be established 27 polling places. These states are Azerbaijan, Belarus, China, the United Arab Emirates, Georgia, Israel, Japan, Qatar, Russia, Turkey, and Ukraine.

The series of debates ”Elections 2019: Please elect me MP on behalf of the Eastern diaspora 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.

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