These days, Romania looks like a medieval country from a fantasy novel created as a satire to today’s politics and affairs. But unfortunately for those living in Romania, the satire is real and the unbelievable is happening: prosecutors started to visit the Romanians in order to find out if the voted at the last Referendum where they were asked if the suspended president Traian Basescu should remain Romania’s president.
Not only that this illegal and highly immoral thing – forcing people to not only say if they voted, but also reveal how did they cast their vote – happened in multiple villages and small cities, but prosecutors also decided to take things one step further into absurdity by forcing the people wear on the Bible that their answers are true. And this – it’s absolutely obvious – is a huge violation of the concept of democracy and secrecy of the cast vote.
Apparently, the prosecutors who visited the people (many of them lacking education and easily scared by authority, therefore answering all the questions) were sent by suspended President’s Traian Basescu men – although it is unclear at the moment how could the results of this violation help his cause – the vote at the Referendum was cast, with over 80% of the voters voting against Traian Basescu, but he still seems to be a favorite to remain Romania’s president because the total number of voters was just 49% of those with a right to vote and the law requires a presence of at least %50 plus one.
According to Romanian TV channel Antena 3 – known for heavy criticism against Basescu – prosecutors went as far as getting people out of the church to ask them about their presence and vote at the referendum. It happened in Romanian village Suraia – fortunately, one of the people who was invited to swear on the Bible, 89 years-old Lixandru, said the three (not one, THREE!) prosecutors: “I think it would be best if you took the Bible and read it,” and later added: “It’s a shame that you – young and educated people – to tell me what to do.”
Of course, this sparked intense debates in Romania and temporary president Crin Antonescu, Basescu’s rival, said: “I am waiting, from the general prosecutor, the president of the Supreme Court and the Minister of Justice immediate answers, because the citizens are worried.” He also added, according to Romanian news agency Mediafax that this crazy thing is “an unprecedented investigation with a political purpose, aimed at those who voted at the referendum (n.r: because over 80% voted against Traian Basescu). Right now, I am not accusing the Prosecutor’s Office of anything, nor I am trying to stop the investigations. But I am asking the general prosecutor to offer a public explanation of the nature, means and purpose of these investigations, because it’s the obligation the General Prosecutor has to keep the public informed.”
Until now, there was no answer from the General Prosecutor and probably there are still villages in Romania where people have to swear on the Bible that they did or did not vote at the referendum. Blatant violation of democracy? Of course. The sad thing is that nobody seems to care and the international opinion keeps its mouth shut on this occasion.