Parliament must be held accountable Nov02

In January 2002, Marta Andreasen was the first chartered accountant ever to be appointed by the European Commission. It is unbelievable that to that date the Commission had not employed professional accountants to manage an EU budget of 96bn!

Andreasen identified a number of major weaknesses in the accounting system that made it impossible for her to approve the accounts for 2001. Her suggestions for reform were rejected and she was suspended for her integrity and professionalism.

An international firm of accountants could easily verify Marta Andreasen's allegation against the European Commission's mismanagement of accounts. Furthermore, these external auditors could also determine whether the EU's annual accounts for the period 1991-2001 are reliable.

The European Parliament's Committee on Budgetary Control (Westminster equivalent of the Parliamentary Accounts Committee) invited Marta Andreasen to give evidence. The European Commission blocked this request. This is contrary to Article 197 of the Treaty of the European Union that authorises Parliament to investigate any financial misdeed in any of the EU institutions.

European citizens should protest and demand that the Council overrule the Commission's decision and allow MEPs to investigate and expose the truth. With more than 80% of the EU Budget remaining unaccountable, it is no wonder our citizens and taxpayers are disillusioned with the EU!