Members of the European Parliament are asking for their own inquiry into the resignation in October of the former European Commissioner for health and consumer affairs, John Dalli, shortly before the Commission unveiled its proposed revisions to the Tobacco Products Directive, according to a story by Dave Keating for the European Voice.
On March 20, political group leaders were shown declassified sections of a report by the EU investigative arm, OLAF, into the circumstances that led up to the resignation.
But because so much information is said still to be missing, Green group president, Rebecca Harms, has asked that a special committee be set up to look into the issue.
The committee would look not only at the circumstances surrounding Dalli’s resignation, but also at the role of tobacco lobbying in EU decision-making.
The leaders of the other political groups will take a decision next month on whether to set up the committee.
The European Ombudsman has already launched an investigation into Dalli’s resignation and, as part of that investigation, has asked the Commission to hand over all files relating to his departure.
Last month, the ombudsman launched a separate investigation into so-called ‘revolving door’ lobbying at the Commission whereby former Commission employees lobby on behalf of the private sector.
Meanwhile, as reported here, Japan Tobacco International said on February 13 that it welcomed a proposal by some members of the European Parliament for a special inquiry into tobacco lobbying at the Commission.
“Open and transparent lobbying activities to inform elected officials and civil servants over policy decision-making clearly serve the public interest,” said Thierry Lebeaux, head of EU affairs at JTI.
Category: Breaking News