A MINISTRY OF LAWYERS

If you are not allowed to travel on national roads, although you paid the vignette, isn’t it normal to ask your money back? If the authorities ignore the Labour Code, isn’t it normal to take advantage of their error and block thousands of layoffs? It is obvious that the state has to pay if it is not able to take decisions that are law abiding. But the following question arises: if there are damages, will these be paid from the same treasury that gathers the vignette earnings, licensing fees, and taxes applied to all carriers and not only to them? At least in theory, those public servants who did the wrongs should take on responsibility, but their liability is a concept completely devoid of meaning in Romania. We had proof of this right before the winter holidays, when problems related to the clearing of snow from the roads found their solution in the dismissing from office of two low echelon directors of the National Roads Company.

Two heads have fallen, but the damages could not be wiped as easily as one could erase two names on a list. Who’s liable for paying? Would the dismissed managers pay any penny from their pockets? Will the state take actions against those who signed bad contracts with the companies hired to clear the snow? How about those who drafted laws which contradict other legal provisions? One of the many possible answers to these questions involves the solidarity of all who make possible the movement of goods and passengers, by land, water or in the sky. If all road, rail, inland waterways, port operators, airlines, freight forwarders and any other transport related businesses were united, their signatures would be more than enough for a legislative initiative through which the public servants’ liability would turn into real ity. This is however a utopian idea in a country where the first reaction is the threat of going to court…

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