Decision time for Moldova’s Constitutional Court.
Posted by democratist on February 8, 2011
8th February 2010,
An interesting day for those of us who concern ourselves with the (rather convoluted) domestic politics of Moldova;
Itar-Tass reports that the constitution court is due to hold a session to decide the time limits by which the president should be elected by parliamentary vote.
This was brought about through an appeal from the Moldovan Communist party (PCRM). They believe Moldovan Constitutional law requires a vote be held within two months of the resignation of the last holder of the post (in this case Mihai Ghimpu, who resigned on December 28, 2010).
But figures from the governing Alliance for European Integration (AIE) claim that this provision does not apply in the case of an interim President being in place, and that therefore there need not be any deadline in the situation as it exists at the moment, with the AEI’s Marian Lupu filling the interim role.
If the court decides that a vote does indeed need to take place within two months (i.e. by February 28th), it seems unlikely that the Communists will provide the two additional votes the AIE require to reach the sixty-one vote threshold. Instead of Lupu being officially appointed President, the most likely outcome is that he would continue in the interim role, and the country will return to the polls for the fourth time in three years, in early 2012.
However if they accept the AEI’s position, it looks as if Moldova might be able to muddle along under the current arrangement for the full length of a presidential term (i.e. until 2014).
Either way, Moldova looks likely to remain the object of ongoing geopolitical jockeying from both Russia and the EU. The Russians are currently touting cheap gas (possibly in return for basing rights), whereas the Europeans have offered a comprehensive trade deal as part of an Association Agreement.