Julia Reda (Verts/ALE
– Mr President, at half-time we have seen deficits with this committee’s foundation on which its work is supposed to stand. The Commission’s reaction to our request for documents has been unsatisfactory. Time has been wasted by both the Commission and by the Joint Research Centre. Adding insult to injury, we were given the most ridiculous explanations for their non—compliance, including ‘the document was too large’ and ‘we didn’t think the documents were relevant.’
Yesterday Commissioner Bieńkowska in turn expressed her dissatisfaction with Member States’ withholding information. Commissioner Bieńkowska, it is now your moment to excel. Give us your information, give it to us in full and give it to us now. The need to strengthen Parliament’s investigatory powers was also highlighted by a former Commissioner’s refusal to even appear before the committee. Let us therefore work to introduce the Verheugen clause to Rule 198, the right to summon a witness, plain and simple.