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What the newspapers say: October 3, 2006

de     HotNews.ro
Marţi, 3 octombrie 2006, 0:00


Corruption, graft and abuse in all of their forms - from revealed facts of the past to the palpable present to theories of the future - are present everywhere in the pages of today’s newspapers.

The press also discusses the fate of Romanian workers in Spain, the future of Romanian transportation and the aftermath of the summit of French-speaking leaders from around the world hosted by Bucharest last week.

Evenimentul Zilei continues a long series of revelations on people who exploited Bancorex, a state-owned bank that was sucked down into bankruptcy in the nineties with a series of abusive loans to various people who never returned the money back.

The newspaper adds new names on the list of Bancorex clients who are now facing trouble in court for various graft or organized crime charges. The list now includes the head of the Rompetrol oil group Dinu Patriciu and his brother Valeriu, newspaper manager Sorin Rosca Stanescu and controversial businessman Mihai Cuptor.

Dinu Patriciu’s current problems with anti-graft prosecutors tackling the so-called “Rompetrol case” continue. According to Gandul, US citizens placed under protected identity received the Department of State approval and submitted witness accounts against Patriciu.

The protected identity was claimed due to the “real possibility” of the three main businessmen involved in the case - Patriciu, Philip Stephenson and John Hamilton Works - to put pressure on at least one witness, the newspaper writes.

Meanwhile, Adevarul focuses on another businessman, Dan Voiculescu, and reports that a secret document dated 2000, compiled by a commission overviewing the Foreign Intelligence Service and prosecutor’s Office, which shows the two institutions suspected a company controlled by businessman-politician Dan Voiculescu of grabbing part of the wealth of ex-dictator Nicolae Ceausescu.

The newspaper says the Italian Mafia was involved in operations of transferring millions of dollars across the border in 1989, when the Ceausescu regime fell.

And Cotidianul focuses on grassroots corruption and reveals all the tips, bribes and traffic of influence one must deal with to enter the closed circles of “Middle Age-style guilds” such as Romania’s doctors, notaries, lawyers, professors and priests.

The newspaper reports that one must pay no less than 33,000 euro to even claim a job as a surgeon, 12,000 euro to become a lawyer’s apprentice and 15,000 euro for priesthood dreamers to get a good church.

And Adevarul notes an interesting fact: just prior to the September 26 EC report that recommended Romania’s EU accession on January 1 next year, the National Anti-Corruption Department (DNA) ordered the arrest of no less than 23 people on large-scale corruption charges. Now, none of them wears handcuffs anymore.

Elsewhere in the newspapers, Gandul reports it’s not easy any more to be a Romanian arriving in Spain, since the country introduced new rules to tackle immigration last year. Still, many Romanians manage to settle everywhere in the Peninsula and are making good money that they never dreamt of earning back home.

Evenimentul Zilei publishes a feature on how Spanish politicians are hunting the votes of Romanian immigrant workers as they will receive voting rights in their adoptive country once Romania joins the EU next year.

And Romanians are already negotiating their political support as hard as they can in order to receive as many promises and guarantees as possible.

Back on home turf, Jurnalul National describes a project of transportation development due to end in 2050 in Romania.

By then, the newspaper reports, the country will look like a Star Trek location compared to its current condition, as it would be crossed by two European corridors, 20 highways, high-speed trains and four brand new major airports.

But it’s a long way there. For now, as Gandul writes, authorities are quarreling over the bits and pieces left behind by the summit of the French-speaking world, hosted by Bucharest last week.

Plasma TVs, computers, other electronic devices and even furniture are due to be shared among the organizers of the Sommet de la Francophonie, which include the Foreign Ministry, two security services and the Parliament. The objects were bought specially for the event and are now seeking new owners.
























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