Letter of President Sassoli to Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš 

 

Letter following statements by PM Babiš about members of the European Parliament

European Parliament President David Sassoli sent a letter today to the Prime Minister of the Czech Republic, Andrej Babiš, following his statements regarding alleged interference by the European Parliament in the internal affairs of the Czech Republic.

In the letter, President Sassoli said that:

“In this respect, I wish to take the opportunity to recall that the EU Treaties give the European Parliament the power and the duty to give or deny the discharge to the European Commission on the implementation of the EU budget, in the exercise of its powers as budgetary authority and of its function of democratic oversight. To this end, Article 319 (1) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union foresees that European Parliament shall examine the accounts, the financial statement and other relevant evaluation reports and special reports by the Court of Auditors. In this context, the Treaties establish that, in order to exercise its powers over the implementation of the EU budget, the European Parliament may ask the Commission to provide evidence on the execution of expenditure or the operation of financial control systems.

“The resolution adopted by the European Parliament is therefore to be considered as part of this process and as an act stemming from its powers of budgetary control and democratic oversight, that should be regarded by all EU actors with the utmost respect.”

Sassoli continued:

“I would also like to underline that the Committee for Budgetary Control will continue to exercise its duties according to its mandate, including regarding the assessment of potential conflicts of interests hampering the good and lawful execution of the EU budget, together with the other relevant EU institutions.”

The President of the European Parliament concluded the letter to PM Babiš saying:

“In this respect, I would also like to express my great concern for the personal attacks directed to some Members of the Budgetary Control Committee of this House in relation with this case. Following unacceptable provocations, one Member of the European Parliament and his family are still under police protection. As you can understand, I am following these cases very closely and I stand ready to activate all the available procedures to protect the integrity of elected Members of this House.”