Moldovan opposition files no-confidence motion against ruling coalition

By bne IntelliNews July 22, 2016

Opposition parties in Moldova’s parliament have filed a no-confidence motion against the fragile ruling coalition, criticising its lack of progress in investigating massive frauds that resulted in $1bn being siphoned off from three local banks.

Despite its extremely narrow majority, the ruling coalition is expected to hold onto power at least until the October 30 presidential elections. However, Prime Minister Pavel Filip accused the opposition parties of putting at risk Moldova's political stability at a moment when the government is close to reaching a key agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Filip’s is the third Moldovan government since the November 2014 parliamentary elections; the country has also had two interim governments during this period.

The motion was filed by opposition parties of pro-EU, pro-Russian and nationalist orientation, agora.md reported on July 21.

34 of Moldova's 101 MPs, eight more than needed, signed the motion. They included 24 MPs from the pro-Russian Socialist Party led by Igor Dodon, seven MPs from the Liberal Democrat Party (PLDM) and three MPs from the Communist Party led by Vladimir Voronin.

The move came after the parliamentary majority rejected the opposition’s attempts to create a committee aimed at speeding up investigations into the frauds in the banking system. The authors of the motion highlighted the coalition’s very weak support among voters (who want the invetsigations completed quickly) at this moment and its alleged connection with those involved in the theft of $1bn from three failed banks.

Instead of accepting opposition's proposal for another parliamentary committee, the ruling coalition is trying to promote a bill requiring the money stolen from the three failed banks to be repaid from public funds.

Lawmakers formally urged the government to submit its semi-annual report to parliament – a formal duty that the government has not carried out. However, the motion goes far beyond the failure to observe the semi-annual deadline, speaking about “those who generated crises in the economy, justice and banking system, siphoning off billions [of lei] from banks.”

Filip admitted the opposition is entitled to submit motions, even when coming from this "new alliance based on common interests". He said the opposition parties were resisting the restructuring policies and reforms to be pursued under the three-year agreement with the IMF.

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