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17 August 2017
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Gheorghe Russu

Vice-director, The Center for Combating Economic Crimes and Corruption

No matter who wins mayoralty, City Hall’s work will be hindered by battles between parties

Antoniţa Fonari pentru Info-Prim Neo

The electoral programs of the candidates are the main means by which they inform the voters about their work priorities and concrete solutions to the identified problems. However, the people in Moldova do not usually vote according to candidates’ platforms. They make a choice rather according to the ethnic and linguistic origin, the level of studies, and the place of origin – urban or rural. They can also resort to boycott – the Democrats won in 2009 because the voters got tired of the Communists. Things seem to go into reverse now.

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Parties-Phantoms, Parties - State Institutions, Parties - State Enterprises

20 parties have registered in the current election campaign. Many people say it is a too big number for such a small country as Moldova. At the same time, much more parties could take part in the election campaign.
Ion PREAŞCĂ, 15 November 2010, 11:25

According to the informative note of the Ministry of Justice, as of 22nd of September, that is, on the threshold of the election campaign, 31 parties were registered in the Register of Parties, and if they wanted, they could participate in the elections. The list of the parties is here.

Parties - the state institutions and enterprises?!

A short analysis of the list of parties made public by the Ministry of Justice raises many questions. For example, we find the Socialist Party, the leader of which Victor Morev, after serving the Communists has been wanted by the international police since 2006 "suspected of prejudicing the national public budget in the amount of over 2 million leis. A criminal case was instituted against Morev under the article 328 (3) of the Criminal Code (power abuse) stipulating imprisonment for up to 15 years".

At the same time, in August 2010 Victor Morev was re-elected Chairman of the Socialist Party, while nothing is known about the investigation.

We find more surprises when we check the parties in the State Tax Service's database.

For example, the Centrist Alliance of Moldova still figures there, as well as the Block for Democratic and Prosperous Moldova, the chairman of which was and still is Dumitru Diacov.

More than that! The Block for Democratic and Prosperous Moldova then appears in the Tax Service as a state enterprise.

The Liberal Party headed by Mihai Ghimpu figured as a "state institution" until November 8th, 2010 and after it obtained a new fiscal code, it entered the category of "other non-commercial organization".

The lawyer Corneliu Gurin explains the situation when some parties figure in the Tax Service's database as state enterprises or institutions by the fact that it was a solution at the moment of their registration in order to receive a fiscal code attribution certificate. Now they have to obtain a new fiscal code and practically all have obtained.

Two chairmen of a party

Another surprise is the case of the Party "For Nation and Country". According to the official data from the State Tax Service, the chairman of this party is Tudor Deliu, the deputy of the Liberal Democratic Party of Moldova, the candidate in the list of this party for the parliamentary elections of November 28, 2010.

Two and a half years have already passed since Tudor Deliu declared that together with the Movement for Nation and Country he was joining the Liberal Democratic Party of Moldova. At the same time, the movement which then became a party, at the elections has Nicolae Utica as its chairman. The confirmation can be found right on the webpage of the party.

It is not the first time in the history of Moldovan parties that a party has several chairmen, but it is the first time when one leader is a candidate in the list of the party headed by him and another leader - in the list of another party.

I thought maybe there was a mistake in the Tax Service's database. I called 080 001 525 and the assistant of the "Fiscservinform", the enterprise responsible for the Tax Service's database and for the information placed there, said there was no mistake and all the data were correct. At the same time, he recommended me to address to the Ministry of Justice, the webpage of which contains the State Register of Non-Commercial Organizations.

I searched for the Movement and the Party in that Register but didn't find any. A simple search in Google showed that this organization was founded on 17th of July 2007. The organization should have been found in the State Register of Non-Commercial Institutions. Meanwhile, the first one starts with the date of 18th of July 2007, while the second one is finished with the date of 12th of July 2007, but there is no mentioning of such an organization or a party.

Tatiana Paşcovschi, the head of the press service of the Justice Ministry said "The List of Political Parties Existing in Moldova" was placed in the compartment of Non-Commercial Organizations Department. Indeed, the political party "For Nation and Country" figures in the List on the 27th position but with the registration number 40.

27. The political party „For Nation and Country"

    The registration number - 40

    The registration date -  17 iulie 2007

    Chairman - Nicolae UŢICĂ 

 Location:  Chişinău mun., str. Cuza Vodă, 19/6, ap. 71

Sursa:http://justice.gov.md/file/Directia%20organizatii%20necomerciale%20/Lista%20Partidelor%20Politice%202010(1).doc.

 According to Tatianei Paşcovschi, this list was also submitted to the CEC.

As for the fact that this party doesn't appear in the Register, Tatiana Paşcovschi said officials of the Non-Commercial Organizations Department had checked the database and everything was correct, and such organization existed in their database with Nicolae Utica being its chairman. The question why any person accessing the database can't find it remained without answer.

Maybe it is the same with other parties? The European Action Movement Party which was registered few months earlier than the Party "For Nation and Country" figures in this database, here is the link. Taking into consideration the fact that the first chairman of the European Action Movement was Anatol Petrenco, and now it is Veaceslav Untilă, I checked the Tax Service's database too. The respective changes are reflected there. The same can be said about the "United Moldova" Party which was headed by Ana Tcaci last year, while this year it is headed by the former Communist deputy Vladimir Ţurcan.

The Political Party "The Humanist Party of Moldova" also has its information brought up to date and its new chairman Valeriu Pasat figures in both registers. At the same time, the Conservative Party is missing, which, according to the Ministry of Justice's list has the 37th registration number as of July 12th, 2006.

The Tax Service says one thing, the Ministry of Justice - another

To clarify the situation with the "For Nation and Country" Party we addressed to the territorial Tax Inspectorate where the party is registered. The matter concerns the Botanica sector of Chisinau municipality. Elena Dragomir, the head of the Botanica Tax Administration, after a short verification confirmed the existence of this organization and the fact that its chairman is Tudor Deliu.

As for the fact that another leader figures in the CEC and Ministry of Justice, as well as in the electoral lists, Elena Dragomir said, "The Inspectorate doesn't deal with verification of data whether the leader is one or another!". Answering the question whether the fact that the Tax Service wasn't informed of the change of the leader is the infringement of the fiscal legislation, the head of the Botanica Tax Administration evaded a clear answer, saying only that the party and the State Registration Chamber should have informed about that.

The State Registration Chamber responded to my request by e-mail that it "administers the State Register of Legal Entities and Individual Entrepreneurs". At the same time, it recommended us to address to the Ministry of Justice. Clearly vicious circle.

The former and the present leader of the party justifies himself

Pavel Ţibernii, the treasurer of the Party "For Nation and Country" replied in Russian claiming that they don't have problems with reports to the Tax Service and other controlling structures and that he doesn't know that it is Tudor Deliu who figures as a head of the party in the Tax Service instead of Nicolae Uţica. According to Ţîbernii, they had no problems in banks either when opening accounts for accumulating money for the election campaign.

Given the fact that the Tax Service, as well as banks lay down requirements in respect of correctness of documents and modifications which are often excessive, the fact that the Party "For Nation and Country" hasn't faced any problems seems at least suspicious.

I administered a publication registered at the Ministry of Justice, and when the matter concerned the Tax Service, if just a comma was on the wrong place, I could be fined. I don't think things have changed. As for banks, if my signature seemed to the controller as not corresponding to the model kept in the bank, I couldn't take money for salaries. It wasn't even about hundreds of thousands of leis, but just about few thousands.

When we addressed to Nicolae Uţica, the official chairman of the Party "For Nation and Country", he looked vexed by the fact that his former party colleague - Tudor Deliu figures as a head. At the same time, he couldn't find an explanation of the fact that the party isn't listed in the database but promised to fix it.

In his turn, Tudor Deliu says he has had no connection with this party for 3 years. "In autumn 2007, I left the party to work as a professor and ever since Nicolae Uţica has been the leader", said the deputy. At the same time, he says he was surprised when 2-3 weeks ago somebody from the Tax Inspectorate called him due to the fact that he is the leader of the Party "For Nation and Country" and said he had to present some information. "I explained the Tax Inspectorate's representative that I haven't been the head of the party for 3 years now and that all questions should be addressed to Nicolae Uţica", said Tudor Deliu.

Then how can you explain the fact that in March 2008 you organized a press conference during which you declared that the Social-Political Movement for Nation and Country declares the act of self-dissolution and joining the Liberal Democratic Party of Moldova?, we asked Tudor Deliu. According to the candidate of the Liberal Democratic Party of Moldova, he agreed together with other members of the party including Nicolae Uţica about the text of the declaration presented at the press conference, but the latter didn't come for some reason.

"Nicolae Uţica probably decided to keep the party for himself, I don't know exactly, but this is what happened then", said Tudor Deliu.

To remind, on 13th of July 2007, Tudor Deliu announced launch of the Social-Political Movement for Nation and Country with himself as its leader. Just a year later, on 17th of March 2008, Tudor Deliu announces at the press conference that „The Social-Political Movement for Nation and Country declares the act of self-dissolution and joining the Liberal-Democratic Party of Moldova ". Before the elections of 5th of April 2009, the respective movement appears again with Nicolae Uţica as its leader. It really was registered in the election campaign but at the end of March the party suddently withdraws itself from the election campaign in favor of the Our Moldova Alliance.

A Pure Moldovan Situation!

Igor Boţan, chief executive of the Association for the Participating Democracy (ADEPT), the organization which has monitored elections and Moldovan parties' activity for already 16 years guessed from the second try what party is talked about when I told him that one of the parties could have problems with data from official registers kept in the tax and juridical authorities.

"It is a pure Moldovan situation", said Igor Boţan. According to him, the situation when one chairman of the party figures at the Justice Ministry and another chairman - at the Tax Service demonstrates that there is no communication between these structures. As for the fact that the new heads of the party didn't trouble themselves to fix the documents and to notify all state structures about the modifications, it can be considered negligence.

 

At the same time, Corneliu Gurin sees rather a problem of accounting explained by the fiscal legislation applied on political parties.

The Ministry of Justice: if the party's leader says its documents are correct, then they really are!

Probably yes. On the other hand, if you think that this party is  carrying out the election campaign declaring that it doesn't need one year to make order in the country, then you have a question - how can it make order in the country if even its documents aren't in order.

Perhaps, it is not the party's fault that a member failed to fulfill his service obligations. Although, it is not about one-two months, it's about three years since the chairman-founder of the party left it!

Here we can remind of the scandal happened in 2008 around the registration of the ex-Prime Minister Vasile Tarlev as a new chairman of the Centrist Union of Moldova and how active the Ministry of Justice was in respect of fulfillment of the modifications registration procedures. I don't think something has radically changed in these procedures. Our question is why it is applied in respect of one party and is not in respect of another party.

Elena Griţco, the head of the Non-Commercial Organizations Department within the Ministry of Justice, administering the State Register of Parties doesn't see any problem here. "All documents connected with registration of parties and modifications introduced are in order. It is not our problem that the information doesn't appear in the Tax Service's Register"!, said Elena Griţco. More than that. According to her, if the present leader of the party says that everything is in order, then it really is.

In other word, we have to believe parties' leaders instead of official documents.

We are asking, when will the order with the state registers will be made? Such situations are not normal and create the impression that nobody monitors or controls what is going on among the parties.



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