Interview with Renato Usatîi, the leader of ‘’Our Party’’
Mr Usatīi, at the beginning of the 2018 political year, you proposed a referendum to confirm the vote of the inhabitants of the Balti district for you as mayor. Why did you use this gesture?
’’Because the abuse and pressure on the part of the power was too much, and as a result, people suffered, even if the target was me. This referendum would have demonstrated to those who wanted to capture the district Balti that all their efforts are in vain, and therefore the terror in relation to Balti municipality had to be stopped. They knew they had no support at Balti, that the world hate them and that is why they blocked the referendum.
You resigned from the position of Mayor of Balti in order to demonstrate to those in power that they have no chance to capture the northern capital, as you say?
Inclusive. We know the methods of those in power when they want to obtain something. They illegally captured the Parliament and the Government, although they did not receive the citizens’ confidence vote for it, subjected their majority in state structures, took control of the capital city hall, instituted total control over most of the local administrations, again without having the citizens vote for it. I sent them a clear message: you want the control over Balti City Hall, let’s go to elections to make people decide, but not through your dark cabinets in Chisinau.
What meant the victory of Nicolae Grigorişin in this case, your party colleague, from the first round in the elections of the Mayor of Bălţi?
It was a reconfirmation of the confidence vote of the inhabitants of Bălţi for our team. It has been clearly seen that people have not been manipulated, intimidated and blackmailed by the actions of power. And such actions, starting with 2015, have been a lot. The citizens of Balti have shown that they are ready to suffer inconveniences but will never sell their freedom, they will not be lured by the promises of those who have usurped the power in the Republic of Moldova. I think it was a hard lesson for the government – it was for the first time then it suffered a failure in their intention to capture an important city.
You said then that if you lose the battle for Balti City Hall, you will withdraw from politics. Why?
I have already demonstrated that politics does not interest me for money. I do not need the power to make my personal interests. I have enough money and the activities that provide me with everything I need have no connection with the Republic of Moldova. A few years ago, I returned to Moldova, feeling a debt to my homeland. I came to help solve the problems people face, to the country’s development. We started from Balti and, together with the inhabitants of the northern capital, we did many beautiful things, even if there were many obstacles. I need the support of people to do politics. That is why I said then that if the citizens do not reconfirm the vote for our team, I am ready to withdraw from politics. I will never be like those who captured the Republic of Moldova – knowing that people hate them, they continue to cling to power, appealing to the dirtiest methods.
How do you qualify the chances of your team in parliamentary elections?
Chances are directly proportional to the state of mind that is in society, and it is not favourableto the government and the pocket parties that surround it. Just as people have shown to those in power what they are worth in the early elections of the mayors of Chisinau and Balti, they will also show them and in the parliamentary elections. Those in power are wrong if they think that people can be deceived by one kilometre of poor quality. Therefore, I believe that the result of the parliamentary elections will be a shock to those in power, and the true opposition (not that drawn and controlled by power) will gain the victory.
Personally, I think we are the only alternative for thecentre-leftelectorate, for those voters who understand they are manipulated by the Democrats and the Socialists. I am sure the final result will release the Republic of Moldova out of captivity.
What will be your strategy in parliamentary elections?
It will be a simple one – and we will continue with people together to release the Republic of Moldova from captivity, to destroy the criminal regime that remains in power in illegal ways. Moldova deserves another kind of present and future. Moldova deserves a present and a truly worthy, prosperous future.
And if after the elections you have to make a coalition with those you now criticize?
It is excluded because we have totally different goals. They want power in order to continue to steal what remains to be stolen in Moldova, to destroy what remains to be destroyed. And I and my team are coming to develop the country. In my time, I rejected the “generous offers” of the power to be in a way together, and I assumed all the consequences. That’s why I’ve been pressed, intimidated, persecuted ( I and my team) over the last few years. If I did not do it then, do you think it could motivate me something to do it after the elections ?! Nothing! I’m interested in power, but not at all costs. For me, power is a means of helping to improve the life of people and I will fight for it until the end.
What, at the moment, is the mood in the team you are leading?
Regardless of the pressures, we have been subjected to, we have kept our ranks intact. Territorial structures work at maximum yield, people are mobilized and we are preparing to win the big battle for Moldova. The country needs a political force truly attached to the interests of the people, people with principles, not seeking favours or satisfying personal interests in politics. It was a long and difficult way, but instead, I think today no one doubts the quality of the human potential we have, the quality of our team and the real purpose we pursue in politics.
What expectations do you have from 2019?
They are the same as most of the citizens of the Republic of Moldova -to release the country out of the captivity of the current regime and finally starting to develop. Moldova has been stagnant for too long, held hostage by politicians who only pursued personal interests. We can no longer allow this stagnation to continue. That is why my message to all is: It is time to forget the past and build together the future that our country, Republic of Moldova, deserves!
Political Almanac 2018
Trainee translator: Mihaela Grosu