EU Escalates Probe into Juncker-Selmayr Cronyism Scandal

The EU standards watchdog is escalating its investigation into the scandal-hit rise of Jean-Claude Juncker’s loathed sidekick Martin Selmayr, who was this year made Europe’s top civil servant. Juncker sparked outrage in Feburary when he parachuted his political Chief of Staff into the hugely powerful role as Secretary General of the European Commission. There were rumours that commissioners’ support was bought. EU civil servants revolted over Selmayr’s lack of experience – the German lawyer, who has never worked in even the most junior official role, is now in charge of 33,000 non-political staff. Concerns were also voiced that Selmayr’s appointment entrenched German bias at the top of the EU. Moreover, it was another predictable appointment in the pale, male and stale world of EU bureaucracy… 

In dramatic developments, the EU Ombudsman has now ordered Juncker’s office to disclose documents relating to the appointment of Selmayr, as well as answer questions over the appointment. A letter from the Ombudsman to Juncker states:

“All documents, whether in electronic or paper format, including correspondence, notes, memos, emails, and all legal advice, from 1 September 2017 until 18 April 2018, relating to the appointment of the new Secretary-General. This should include documents sent from Commissioners to their cabinets, documents within and between cabinets, as well as documents between Commissioners/cabinets and the Commission services.”

The Ombudsman is investigating multiple complaints that the appointment “did not comply with the EU Staff Regulations and with principles of good administration.” Juncker will have to answer questions over the process and propriety of the appointment…

The European Parliament already conducted its own investigation which concluded the appointment: “could be viewed as a coup-like action which stretched and possibly even overstretched the limits of the law”. UKIP MEP Jonathan Bullock said: “Even die-hard Europhiles are waking up to the fact that there is something rotten at the heart of Brussels. Junckers answers will be interesting; and to think that remainiacs want us to cling to this devious, corrupt organisation.” Trouble ahead for Jean-Claude…




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