Open letter in which ALTER-EU groups complain to EP President Schulz about a breach of the Code of Conduct for (ex-)Members of the European Parlaiment
Friends of the Earth Europe and Corporate Europe Observatory have submitted an official complaint over a breach of the code of conduct for Members of the European Parliament (MEPs).
The European Parliament Former Members Association (FMA)1 is organising a dinner debate in the European Parliament on 4th June 2013, for which speakers include Mrs Cecilia Malmström, European Commissioner for Home Affairs. The invitation, see attached, signed by former MEP Mr Pat Cox on behalf of the FMA, is reaching out to corporate sponsorship:
“at € 2,500 per table of eight persons, with your name and logo prominent on the evening’s programme will assure a ‘meet and greet opportunity’ with our distinguished guest, [...] and a possibility to pose questions after Mrs Cecilia Malmström’s speech. Upon your request, if so you wish, we will seek to arrange for a serving or former MEP, or a Commission Official to join your table.”
We consider that this invitation constitutes a breach of the Code of Conduct for MEPs, the implementation of which European Parliament President Schulz is responsible for.
According to article 6: “Former Members of the European Parliament who engage in professional lobbying or representational activities directly linked to the European Union decision-making process may not, throughout the period in which they engage in those activities, benefit from the facilities granted to former Members under the rules laid down by the Bureau to that effect.”
By openly seeking corporate sponsorship for activities of the EP FMA, and asking money in exchange of access to Members of the European Parliament and Commission officials, Mr Pat Cox – on behalf of the FMA – is engaging in activities falling within the category of lobbying or representational activities directly linked to the EU decision-making process. This is in breach of article 6 of the code, which clearly forbids former members from using the facilities granted to them to do so.