After the devastating Qatargate claims, a Brexiteer called the former official’s admission that it is almost difficult to monitor what MEPs are doing “staggering but not surprising.”
Ben Habib, a former MEP for the Brexit Party, argued that the assembly’s lack of oversight and the enormous sums of money offered by lobbyists were “a recipe for corruption.”
Mr Habib, a real estate investor, responded to statements made by Emilio De Capitani, a 26-year veteran of the Parliament.
Speaking to Politico, Mr De Capitani addressed allegations of influence-peddling by Morocco and Qatar, which led to the imprisonment of numerous persons, including Greek MEP Eva Kaili, who vehemently denies any wrongdoing.
Mr De Capitani now advocates for more openness in Brussels.
“This makes it very hard to check what these MEPs are really doing,” he said.
Speaking to the Express, Mr Habib said: “The incident involving the European Parliament is undoubtedly shocking, but not unexpected.
“There was no mechanism for Parliamentarians within the chamber to propose amendments to legislation as it passed through, there was no first, second and third reading as legislation evolved and draught legislation was presented in final form”, according to Mr Habib. Additionally, “Parliament did not act as a legislative body.”
“The whole process is nebulous and open to abuse.”
“Secondly, the European Parliament was “crawling with lobbying groups and vested interests being promoted”, he stressed.
“The combination of backroom dealings, the absence of scrutiny and large pockets of money seeking to influence Parliamentary outcomes is a recipe for corruption.”
“The European Parliament makes Westminster look like a paragon of virtue.”