ALDE Party President Sir Graham Watson today defended Moldova's Liberal Party leader Mihai Ghimpu and his colleagues from attack over the formation of a new governing coalition. 'The decision by Vlad Filat's Liberal Democrats and Marian Lupu's Democrats to form a coalition without the Liberal Party was not caused by Liberal inflexibility in negotiations. Sadly, the reason is more likely to lie in a decision by the so-called Democratic Party to seek support from the Communists for the election of a President.'
Recalling the visit to Chisinau last week of representatives of the three major EU political families, Sir Graham continued: 'The proposal for a workable coalition which the three major EU political parties put to the leaders of Moldova's three pro-EU parties was accepted in full by Moldova's Liberals. It was rejected by the others, primarily by the Democratic Party.'
The EU proposal would have de-politicized the office of Prosecutor General and given the two bigger parties the posts of Prime Minister and the President of Parliament. The decision on a government candidate for the President of the Republic would have been reached by negotiation between the three parties.
'To seek support from a Party backed by Moscow rather than their former Liberal Party coalition partners is a bad sign for the future of Moldova', Sir Graham concluded. 'It suggests that corruption and nepotism will increase and that the country has strayed from the path of European reform.'
In addition to his role as President of the ALDE Party, of which Moldova's PL is a member, Sir Graham Watson was the European Parliament's rapporteur on Moldova from 2009-14, a post now occupied by his fellow Liberal Petras Austrevicius MEP.