The socialists have secured the resignation of the Sandu’s government and are ready to seize power
Vladimir Rotar, RTA:
The alliance of the PSRM and the ACUM bloc has officially come to an end. The socialists and democrats voted together to dismiss Sandu’s government. Whatever happens next, there will clearly be no unnatural friendship between the current right and left.
For many, such a rapid collapse of the ruling alliance was a complete surprise. Indeed, there were problems in relations between the ‘sworn allies’ from the very beginning, but there seemed to be no fundamental changes in the leadership of the country before the New Year. Besides, not so long ago, members of the coalition signed an updated cooperation agreement and seriously discussed the possibility of working in “one team” for the next four years. Therefore, the vote of no confidence in the government, called by the PSRM, became a bolt from the blue.
Moldova has once again proved that its domestic policy is a real field of miracles. Even the unprecedented international consensus of the main players on the European continent – the United States, Russia and the European Union – was not enough to keep the ruling coalition in Moldova afloat. There is a feeling that the sad end of the coalition was an unpleasant surprise for the foreign partners of Chisinau. Even the hastily organized shuttle diplomacy of Washington, Moscow and Brussels was no help.
Earlier, RTA experts have already made predictions about the scenarios of further developments. Apparently, as expected, things move towards formation of a minority government by the socialists, which will be based on the tacit alliance of the PSRM and the Democratic Party. Off-year parliamentary elections will be held, but probably together with the presidential ones. Thus, for almost a year, the socialists and Igor Dodon, even taking into account the need to share with the democrats, receive almost all the power in the country.
It seems that the President outsmarted their opponents from ACUM. He did not allow them to seize key institutions of power like the Prosecutor General’s office and in time used the ‘golden share’ in the form of the PDM faction in Parliament to remove the ‘partners’ from the Moldovan political scene and govern alone. However, despite the situational victory, it seems that the head of state started an extremely dangerous game and, having won the battle now, risks losing the entire war.
First, from now on, the socialists will be responsible for the collapse of the unique coalition that overthrew the regime of Vlad Plahotniuc and for a time united the divided Moldovan society. The PSRM can accuse Maia Sandu of trying to “usurp power” as much as it likes, but the fact is: the vote of no confidence, which marked the beginning of another internal political crisis, was initiated by the left-wingers. And there is an opinion that now pro-Europeans and even democrats will reproach them for this when occasion offers.
Second, the creation of a minority government in the current environment seems a dubious success. Everyone understands how dangerous it is to be left alone in control of Moldova less than a year before the next election. While Sandu’s government may not have been a model of high professionalism, the bigger question is whether socialist ministers will do better.
And, finally, third, it is not very clear how Chisinau’s partners in the East and West, who invested so much in Plahotniuc’s departure and the fragile balance of pro-Western and pro-Russian forces, will react to the events. Shifting in favor of the PSRM, the previous consensus around the republic is likely to break down. Now Moldova once again risks becoming an arena of active conflict of agendas of major powers. What it will bring for formally ‘pro-Russian’ Dodon is not difficult to understand – for example, the suspension of financial assistance and ‘excluding’ from contacts in the West.
All these factors can significantly complicate the life of the socialists and Igor Dodon in the next parliamentary and presidential elections. The latter, moreover, automatically gets the strongest opponent in the person of Maia Sandu, who, if the coalition is maintained, could prefer to remain in the Prime Minister’s chair.
As for the pro-Europeans, the situation does not look critical for them. ACUM will again move into its usual opposition, from where it will be convenient to attack the socialist authorities. Moreover, now they will not be constrained by allied obligations and will be able to fully take it out on former partners and, especially, Igor Dodon, who will inevitably be declared “the new Plahotniuc”.
Yet it is difficult to make any predictions about what the country faces next. After all, Moldovan politics is used to such back-flips which can amaze even experienced experts. We cannot even say with certainty that the socialists will be able to implement options with their ‘government’ – in the end, nothing will prevent the democrats in the future to let down the PSRM and the President. In any case, taking responsibility for the collapse of the coalition, Igor Dodon and the PSRM may have made a big mistake and the current victory may soon be Pyrrhic.
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