A Series of Resignations Coming in the Moldovan Government?

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Sergiu Ceban Some members of the government seem to resign in the near future. That is what both President Igor Dodon and Prime Minister Ion Chicu tell about. And it’s not to be done in vain - the list of negatively distinguished “technocratic” ministers is rapidly expanding. On February 4, one of the Moldovan television channels aired Igor Dodon’s promise to soon make a series of reshuffles in the Moldovan government and dismiss ministers who “underperform their duties.” As expected, personnel decisions can be made summing up the 100 days of the Chicu government expiring at the end of February. By the way, the prime minister himself also criticized the work of the cabinet the day before, saying that to solve certain problems layoffs are needed. Indeed, after a little more than two months, the only thing Dodon-Chicu government can boast ofis their big plans for the future. And even they are based on the Russian credit line, the fate of which by the way, is still not clear, at least to a simple layman. The reality is that the population had to face serious delays in salaries and high-rank officials’conceited comments on this issue shafting off the load of responsibility for the situation onto “the diversionist accountants”. The Minister of Education Corneliu Popovicican boldly lead the list of “retirees”, he did not onlymark himself with controversial statements about the Romanian language but also found nothing better than to answer that “the artist must be hungry”to cultural workers complainingabout delayed payments. The situation with salariesgets even more piquant due to the fact that recently, the wide public found out MPs voted for a significant increase of their personal, already considerable sufficiency. Furtheris to be mentioned the Foreign Minister Aureliu Ciocoi‘s disgrace, who said in an interview that the 14th Russian army’ intervened in the events of 1992 and actually stopped the bloodshed on the Nistru banks. The minister’s statement provoked heavy criticism from veteran organizations and the opposition, which accused both Ciocoi and Dodon personally of implementing an anti-statist policy. The actions of the vice-premier for reintegration Alexandru Flenchea hit the government’s image no less painfully, as a result of which Chisinau and Tiraspol did not sign the Bratislava protocol and thus, at the beginning of the year actually entered into an open confrontation on transport issues. Flenchea, actually only continues the course of his predecessor, but it was on his watch that the level of mutual trust fell to the critical point and the transport crisis could be completely resolved only with the personal intervention of the president, who convinced Tiraspol not to take any harsh retaliatory measures. Moreover, this step also caused a wave of negative assessments and reactions on concessions to the left bank. The Interior Minister Pavel Voicu is next on the list due to his indirect controversy with the Tiraspol police regarding the fight against crime, which cast a shadow not only over him as head of the Ministry, but over the entire Moldova's law enforcement system. Accusations against Transdniestrian law enforcement authorities appeared to be not quite rational, since the reaction on the left bank unveiled numerous unresolved issues in relations with Tiraspol unfortunately affecting life and safety of the country. As is evident, the list of candidates who might quit the Chicu government is extensive enough. However, experts still doubt whether the Moldovan president will actually be ready to sacrifice the senior officials and make personnel changes. Nevertheless, such a possibility should not be excluded, since illustrative “executions” of officials by the strong Moldovan leader in the pre-electoral period will one way or another be desired in the society, especially in case of the most negative scenario - Moscow's refusal to provide the necessary credit resources. Meanwhile, the president managed to outline the limits of possible personnel sanctions, which should keep primarily the Democrats from the temptation to dismiss the entire Dodon-Chicu government. In particular, the Moldovan leader made it clear that any attempt to "get rid of" the current cabinet would inevitably bring about early elections, leaving, for instance, the PDM outside the political process. Despite a number of failures and lack of significant progress, the president cannot allow the technocrats' government to fall after only a few months of its work - otherwise such a failure will boomerang on him.