But this day, when Romanians democratically elected their fifth president will go down in history as the coming of age of Romanian democracy.I was both proud and happy as I’ve never been before, to have voted, as have many of my co-nationals, for Mr. Johannis, who represents an alternative to the corruption, ugly displays of nationalism and hypocrisy that have characterized Romanian politics for the past years. But most of all, I am proud of all the Romanians who went out to vote in record numbers within and outside the country, especially those in cities across the globe, from Chisinau to Paris to Berlin to London and more, those Romanians living abroad, like myself, who have spent up to 11 hours in the cold, sometimes in the rain, queuing in front of the Romanian embassies to cast their votes.
This election campaign has been full of dirty tricks, played mostly by the current prime-minster, accused of having abused his position to win favour with the voters by raising some wages of public servants such as teachers, passing laws that permit inter-party migration, and worst of all, accused of trying to prevent the Romanian diaspora from casting an unfavourable vote. These actions have managed to secure Mr. Victor Ponta, who had a 10% advantage after the first round two weeks ago, that he will lose the presidency seat.
However, the most heart-warming part of these election results is perhaps not the victory of Mr. Johannis, who will have many opportunities to prove his worth to the 6 million people who voted for him, but the incredible mobilisation of Romanians, politically and socially divided for many years. It is the reawakening of a nation that has finally understood, 25 years after the toppling of a communist dictatorship, what democracy is all about: a constant fight for a system in which justice and rule of law uphold the rights of citizens in a pluralistic society.