On December 1st, 2013, Neculai Ontanu, Mayor of Bucharest's Second District, organized a great feast for possible voters, during Romania's National Day.
He kindly "demanded" 20 food businesses from his district to prepare and "donate" 100.000 sarmale, a Romanian dish that is prepared usually during winter (meatballs rolled in cabbage). They also offered 1.25 tons of mulled tuica (a traditional Romanian spirit of around 45% alcohol by volume). Ontanu wanted to beat his previous record, from 2012, when, with the same generosity, food businesses from Bucharest "donated" 67.200 sarmale (according to gandul.info).
Each hungry citizen received 4 sarmale, one bread roll and a shot of tuica.
20 military tents were assembled in various areas of the Second District. Each tent represented, independently, a food business "donor".
Ontanu, a brigadier general within the Ministry of Defense, asked the local police of his district to pick up the food from the suppliers.
No official documents regarding the value of the donations were offered and no details regarding how the event was organized were given.
Most politicians are trying to keep themselves alive in the minds of voters through events similar to this, by feeding them or by organizing low quality musical events (apart from Christmas cards or other propaganda materials).
I obtained the alms by replicating what other citizens of the Second District did. I stayed in line at 11:00, in front of a military tent that was placed close to the Second District city hall, close to Obor market.
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