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Budgetary control MEPs refused to endorse Karel Pinxten as a Court of Auditors member for Belgium in a secret ballot on Thursday.

Mr Pinxten, a member of the Court of Auditors (CoA) since 2006, was seeking a renewal of his mandate. His candidacy was turned down by 13 votes to 10 with 2 abstentions in a secret ballot at the Budgetary Control Committee.

In separate ballots, the Committee endorsed  Hannu Takkula and Pietro Russo as CoA members for Finland and Italy respectively.

Mr Takkula, currently a MEP, would take up the duties at the CoA for the first time, while Mr Russo would serve a second term. All candidates still face a vote by the full house.

Mr Takkula, who holds a Doctorate degree in Education from the University of Lapland, first served as a MEP from 2004 to 2014 and re-entered the European Parliament in 2015. He was a Member of the Finnish Parliament from 1995 to 2004. He was endorsed with 13 votes to 9 with 2 abstentions.

 

Mr Russo, a former judge with a degree in Law from the University of Catania, first became Member of the CoA in 2012. He was endorsed with 17 votes to 4, with 4 abstentions.

 

Quick facts

 

The Court of Auditors has 28 members, one from each Member State. They are appointed for a renewable term of six years. The Council, after consulting the European Parliament, decides on the candidate presented by each country.

 

To prepare for a hearing in Parliament, a candidate is asked to answer a questionnaire prepared by the Budgetary Control Committee. At the hearing, candidates may make a five-minute opening statement, followed by a question and answer session with committee members. The committee votes on the candidate in a secret ballot. If approved in committee, the nomination is then put to a vote by Parliament as a whole.

If the opinion, adopted by Parliament, on an individual nomination, is unfavourable, the President asks the Council to withdraw its nomination and to submit a new nomination to Parliament.