Romanian government survives first no-confidence vote of the year

15:18, March 17, 2011      

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The Romanian coalition government led by Democrat Liberal Emil Boc Wednesday survived the first no-confidence vote of the year, over the new Labor Code for which the ruling coalition had decided to take responsibility before the Parliament.

A final count showed 212 parliamentarians voted for the opposition's censure motion, compared with 236 needed for a majority in the 471-seat parliament.

The motion titled "The Boc Code - Low Wages, High Unemployment, Bankrupt Companies" was tabled last week by the opposition after the government took responsibility for the new Labor Code on March 8.

The opposition argued that the censorship motion is aimed at slamming both the new measures introduced in the Labor Code, as well as the way they are adopted, making their point that the responsibility-taking procedure is not specific to democracy.

According to them, the new Labor Code adds to the instability of Romanian employees on the job market, due to the excessive use of determined period and temporary work contracts, as well as by expanding the hiring probationary period.

Prime Minister Boc told the parliament, ahead of debates of the motion, that the new Labor Code has nothing to do with alleged slavery or similar theories circulated by the trade unions, urging at the same time the Opposition to stop spreading what he called disinformation among the public opinion in relation to the new Labor Code.

"It is a labor code for all those working lawfully in Romania that severely penalizes those using undeclared labor," stressed the prime minister, adding that "this labor code we are promoting is for more jobs in Romania for easier employment and for people to be able to find jobs."

The trade unions also organized a protest rally in front of the Parliament Palace, while the railway unionists halted work Wednesday morning and went on a warning strike of two hours.

The incumbent government last year has survived several votes of non-confidence prompted by the austerity measures it implemented amid the economic crisis.

According to the Constitution of Romania, the government can take responsibility before the Parliament for a bill. If, within three days after the government's move, the lawmakers do not initiate a non-confidence motion against the ruling line-up, the bill shall be considered adopted. If, on the other hand, the non- confidence motion reaps a majority vote in Parliament, the government shall be dismissed.

The current coalition government was sworn in December 2009 and consists of the Democratic Liberal Party, the Hungarian Democratic Union and the National Union for Romania's Progress, a group composed of former independents. The three opposition parties in the parliament -- the Social Democratic Party, the National Liberal Party and the Conservative Party, formed the Social Liberal Union early February to counter ruling.

Source: Xinhua

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