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Democrat September-October 2002 (Number 65)

Time to question Romano Prodi's
corrupt Commission!

EU gravy train

"The Commission's suspension of former chief accountant Marta Andreasen shows clearly that President Romano Prodi and Vice President Neil Kinnock does not have any ambition to deal with fraud and mismanagement. Instead, they use more efforts to silence their critics", says Helle Hagenau, member of TEAM's Board and Secretary General of No to EU in Norway.

Jacques Santer's Commission was collectively sacked in 1999, after allegations of corruption and failure to tackle fraud. Neil Kinnock then got the task in Prodi's new Commission to clean out nepotism and mismanagement. Marta Andreasen was also recruited as chief accountant to strengthen control of the EU's budget. A budget, she claims, is "out of control", according to the Independent.

As a result of alleged accounting irregularities, and lack of basic accounting standards, she refused to sign the EU's accounts for 2001. When she wrote to Romano Prodi to inform about budget mismanagement she was removed from her post as chief accountant and replaced at the Commission's personnel and administration department. Now Neil Kinnock has fulfilled his threat from last month and suspended Marta Andreasen.

"Marta Andreasen has just done her job trying to clean up the budget mess. But, evidently Prodi and Kinnock have not done their's. Despite their promises to tackle fraud and increase transparency nothing has happened. Now it is time to question Romano Prodi's corrupt Commission just like Jacques Santer's was in 1999", says Helle Hagenau.