Romania has a new interim prime minster, but will he be able to calm tensions on the streets?
Sorin Campeanu has taken the hot seat, replacing Victor Ponta who resigned on Wednesday amid demonstrations nationwide following a deadly nightclub fire.
“Romania is and must remain a factor of stability,” Campeanu said after being appointed, in a message
destined for investors and international creditors.
Education minister in Ponta’s left-leaning administration, Campeanu told Romanians that as balanced an economy as possible is needed in order to preserve trust in the country.
His declarations followed two nights of public protest after a fire killed 32 people and injured nearly 200 more last Friday at a nightclub in the capital, Bucharest.
Demonstrators blame endemic corruption and have denounced the public administration and political class.
Romania’s President Klaus Iohannis appointed the new interim premier.
Addressing those who took to the streets, Iohannis said,
“I have an important message for you. I saw you, I heard you .Your demands matter to me.”
Iohannis said that he would consult political parties and civil society in the next two days, ahead of naming a new permanent prime minister.
If parliament fails to endorse his choices, Romania could be headed for early elections.
That is certainly the desire of many of the tens of thousands of protesters.
As for the now ex-prime minister Ponta, he was already facing trial for corruption, before anger erupted on the streets.