There are 370 million people in Europe but the Member States,
including Britain, cannot appoint just 20 Commissioner-designates who are
competent, experienced and credible without the baggage of past misdeeds!
Why should the people of Europe accept unsuccessful or rejected
politicians who are recycled for positions in Europe?
Mr.Prodi and his new team should have been questioned incisively
and comprehensively. Instead MEPs were denied access to Mr.Prodi. His team
was subject, in the main, to questions that were too vague. Sharp
questions did not produce genuine answers and assurances of action sounded
hollow. Some candidates are alleged to be involved in fraud or could face
criminal prosecution. MEPs were not allowed to express their assessment of
the hearings and British Conservative attempts to hold an indicative vote
after each hearing was flatly denied!. Such practices devalue the status
of the European Parliament!
In Committees and in the EPP Group meetings, I insisted that
Parliament derives authority from a popular mandate and it should not
"negotiate" with Prodi the following fundamental rights:-
1. ACCESS TO INFORMATION
2. CODE OF CONDUICT
3. RIGHT TO QUESTION ANY COMMISSIONER
4. RIGHT TO SACK ANY COMMISSIONER if there is a NO CONFIDENCE
motion passed by a simple majority in Parliament.
Why do we need the Parliament if Prodi can over rule it? How can
Parliament be accountable to the people if it has no teeth to demand
Prodi must not forget that he has been appointed to SERVE - not
RULE the people of Europe!