The European Parliament has officially nominated former Romanian anti-corruption head Laura Codrutas Kovesi for the European Prosecutor Office position, according to a press release by the Greens/EFA group in the European Parliament, which has a member in the negotiator team. The decision has been taken today in the European Parliament’s Conference of Presidents. The next move now is that the EP agrees the nomination with the EU Council.
“The European Parliament is sending a strong message that we take the fight against corruption, fraud and cross border crime seriously by endorsing someone with such experience and expertise. Laura Codruta Kovesi’s has an almost unparalleled track record of standing up for justice and holding officials to account for corruption, despite desperate attempts at interference in her work from the Social Democrat and ALDE government.
“The Romanian government, which is currently trying to pass laws to de-facto legalise corruption in the country for officials, is attempting to discredit Kovesi through the courts even today. Now, we call on EU Member States to show that they are on the side of justice and not to bow to pressure from the Romanian government when it comes to the final selection for the European Chief Prosecutor,” said Ska Keller.
“It’s vital that the EU proves that it is willing to stand up to political interference in the fight against corruption and fraud by choosing Laura Codruta Kovesi. Today the European Parliament has made it clear to the Romanian people who are sick of the endemic corruption of the Social Democrat and ALDE government, that we support your struggle.
“The EPPO will be an imperative tool in the fight against corruption across Europe and the selection of Kovesi will provide the skills and courage needed for the role of European Chief Prosecutor. We will stand firm in our choice for European Chief Prosecutor in negotiations with the Council until the end,” said in his turn Philippe Lamberts, President of the Greens/EFA group.
European Public Prosecutor’s Office (EPPO), a newly agreed body tackling corruption, cross-border VAT fraud and crimes against the EU budget is expected to become operational as of 2020. So far 22 EU Member States have signed-up to the EPPO, except for UK, Poland and Hungary.