Story By: Lee Bullen, Sub Editor: Joseph Golder,Agency: Central European News
Video Credit: CEN/Romania Vrea Autostrazi
Romanian media turned out in force to support a campaign by a local businessman who built a one-metre stretch of motorway in protest at the country’s “nightmarish roads”.
According to local media, several TV and radio stations in Romania joined Stefan Mandachi’s call to action, and much of the country downed tools at 3pm on 15th March for quarter of an hour to protest the lack of motorways. He says the problem has caused more “deaths than the victims of the Romanian Revolution in 1989”.
The action reportedly included major media companies such as Prima TV, Kiss FM, Rock FM and the Music Channel.
Even the Romanian president Klaus Iohannis supported the initiative, saying on social media: “About the protest taking place at 3pm today for more motorways, I want the protesters to know that I am with them.”
Fed up with the poor road infrastructure in his home region of Moldavia, Mandachi privately commissioned a one-metre stretch of motorway at a personal cost of 3,800 GBP, according to reports.
It is Moldova’s first stretch of motorway and Mandachi hopes that it will force the authorities to lay down more.
The 33-year-old, who owns a chain of fast food restaurants with over 850 employees, calculated that in a period of 15 years, he has wasted over 18 months of his life sitting behind the wheel.
He blames the poor road conditions and lack of motorways for people spending long periods of time in their cars, and claimed that the authorities are not interested in improving the infrastructure.
Mandachi also said that the region is economically isolated due to the issue and that an improved road network would attract more investment.
He also said that Moldova’s “nightmarish roads” claims “more deaths than the victims of the Romanian Revolution in 1989” every year.
Pictures Credit: CEN/@stefanvalentinmandachi & CEN/Romania Vrea Autostrazi