All three parties in his coalition abstained from the vote, which saw 207 votes to 8 in favor of the motion, short of the 275 votes needed to dismiss Ponta from office. Two hundred and seven parliamentarians voted for the motion, with eight opposing it.
Romania’s prime minister Victor Ponta gestures during a special…
He faces charges of fraud, tax evasion and money laundering dating back to his days as a lawyer before he was elected prime minister in 2012.
As the vote got underway, a few 5,000 people demonstrated in a park next to parliament, shouting “Down with the government!” and “You are a disgrace for Romania!”
Romania’s Victor Ponta hangs on to power despite facing corruption charges. The opposition has also been tainted by allegations of corruption.
The corruption investigation sparked multiple calls for Victor Ponta to resign, but he has refused to quit as premier although he stepped down as head of the Social Democrat party in July.
As debates on the motion started, thousands of opposition-led protesters gathered outside the giant, Communist-era Palace of the Parliament in central Bucharest, many sheltering under umbrellas, calling on Ponta to step down.
“Ponta must leave. Romania is losing a lot as long as Ponta remains in his post, he lost all of his credibility”, the opposition Liberal party leader Alina Gorghiu told parliament.
Following the vote, Ponta said he supported a plan to request a new aid deal from the worldwide Monetary Fund (IMF), following several bailouts received since 2009, when the financial crisis hit.
But Ponta, 43, argues that Romania’s economy has recovered during his tenure and says his dismissal would bring political instability.