According to MEPs, the EU has failed to tackle corruption in Parliament. Recently, MEPs debated the ongoing investigation into Qatargate. Members of the European Parliament spent an hour addressing the cash-for-influence charges. Many MEPs expressed dissatisfaction with the EU’s response.
The authorities in the European Parliament have made some efforts to tighten the rules governing lobbying. However, several MEPs express their concern that not enough has been done. MEP Karima Delli said the whole scandal has tarnished us all. Further, she contended that it was time for Parliament to clean its house.
The police investigation is still underway. Eva Kaili denies corruption charges, money laundering, and involvement in a criminal organization. Pier Antonio Panzeri and Francesco Giorgi have both admitted to police their involvement. However, Giorgi now claims that his statements were collected under pressure.
On the other hand, the Qatari and Moroccan governments have both refuted the charges. During the debate, several MEPs said a chain of leaked documents from the police inquiry also raised serious concerns about the scale of the alleged misconduct.
Irena Joveva, a Slovenian MEP, wonders that how much corruption has been eradicated. She asserted that illegal lobbying is still actually influencing EU decision-making. Some MEPs criticized the Belgian investigation for being too delayed 12 months after the initial arrests.
Values and Transparency Commissioner Vera Jourová advised MEPs that the EU’s new ethics body must be established before next year’s EU elections. She maintained that she heard from many voices that there was something rotten in Brussels. Further, she urged that they have to be quite careful because trust in democracy and institutions goes down.
It is no denying in fact that the people are angry about the corruption and extreme, unaccountable privileges of the politicians. This is high time for MEPs to address this matter as soon as possible. The European Parliament must take decisive action to restore people’s trust in democracy. They must ensure that all politicians are held accountable for their actions and that the public is able to hold them accountable. They must also ensure that their laws are fair and just.