Romania: Self-appointed king of the Roma announces virtual currency
Dorin Cioaba, the self-appointed king of the Roma, announced last week in the Romanian city of Sibiu that Roma throughout 37 countries will soon have their own virtual currency, the "lov", which will be exchanged at a 1:1 rate with the euro. "We will begin with one lov valued at one euro and then we will see over time whether its value rises or falls," Cioaba said in an interview with the Agerpres press agency.
Last year Cioaba was elected president of the International Romani Union (IRU), the world's oldest international Roma organization, at an extraordinary congress in Sibiu. He replaced his father Forin, who passed away last August.
At the end of May 2014, however, it was agreed by a session of the IRU cabinet and presidium in Warsaw that the organization would now be temporarily led by Vice President Viktor Famulson until the IRU congress can elect a new president. "The previous actions of Dorin Cioaba were not discussed with the IRU cabinet, they are illegitimate, and his declaration as President of the IRU is illegitimate and contravenes the IRU statutes," states a declaration from the IRU which news server Romea.cz has seen.
According to the Warsaw declaration, Cioaba was only ever authorized by the IRU to organize a meeting on behalf of his deceased father. "Dorin Cioaba is continuing to act in the name of the IRU as if he were its president, but the validity of his authorization expired in October 2013," the declaration states.
Cioaba says the introduction of a virtual currency is a move that will further the IRU's international recognition. "If we have a new government we must also have new money," he explained to Agerpres.
The self-appointed king said the new virtual currency will begin circulating after the Roma's status as a "stateless nation" is acknowledged. The term "lov" is derived from the Romanes word "love", which means "money".
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