A breath of fresh air is blowing on the Romanian political scene two months before the legislative elections of 6 December. On the occasion of the municipal elections which took place Sunday, September 27, the USR Plus list (Union to save Romania), a center-right formation from associations, is changing the political situation in the country, after its surprise victory in Bucharest and in several other major cities of the country.
The capital was indeed won by Nicusor Dan, a mathematician trained in Paris, very active in associations, and who has been fighting for Bucharest’s heritage since the early 2000s. “We are going to change the face of Bucharest”, he proclaimed after the announcement of his victory obtained with 43% of the vote. “This city has enormous potential, Dan added. We can no longer accept that the town hall of the capital is managed as in the Ceausescu years. “
In Timisoara, a city in the west of the country and symbol of the anti-communist revolution of 1989, a German national unknown to the general public won the ballot with 52% of the vote. Dominic Fritz, 37, discovered Romania in 2003 while volunteering at an orphanage in Timisoara. Seventeen years later, when he didn’t speak a word of the language when he started out, he too won over voters on the USR Plus lists. “With this victory, Timisoara completes the revolution she started in 1989, did he declare. For the first time, Romanians elected a mayor who was not born in Romania, and their message is clear: Timisoara is making history not only in Romania but also in Europe. “
The town hall of Bucharest’s chicest and richest first district is set to be won by a Franco-Romanian national, Clotilde Armand, a USR Plus candidate, who posted the best score shortly before the final scoring. “Your vote is making history”, welcomed the MEP (Renew group) at her support after the closing of the polling stations. In this district, however, the end result remains uncertain, with Romanian police investigating allegations of electoral fraud after a man was filmed leaving the polling stations with nearly 500 ballots.
Rejuvenation of the political class
This generation of young elected officials, born between 1995 and 2010, is in the process of changing the political situation. According to a poll carried out by CURS-Avangarde in Bucharest, 60% of the voters of Nicusor Dan are under 30 years old. “My generation has succeeded materially, but we also need to live in a country that has meaning, says Vlad Voiculescu, 37, elected vice-mayor of Bucharest on the USR Plus list and right-hand man of Nicusor Dan. More and more young Romanians who have succeeded in the West are returning to their country. Their departure was a tragedy, but their return will be a great opportunity. We will rebuild our country, and this is how we will help strengthen the European Union to which we belong. “
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