“Trusting a goat with a cabbage!” many shouted when they read the latest article in daily Népszava about the possibility of Tamás Deutsch becoming deputy chair of the EU Committee on Budgetary Control that regularly monitors the misuse of EU funds and corruption cases.
Indeed, it is quite ridiculous that Balázs Hidvéghi (Fidesz Communications Director turned MEP), world-record holder in indoor Soros and Brussels bashing, has been nominated as Vice -President of the Fundamental Rights Committee, dealing with issues concerning the rule of law. It is also rather peculiar that Tamás Deutsch may be a Vice-President of the Budgetary Control Committee.
This will be the result of next week’s internal voting. It should be added that my colleague, Mr. Deutsch, is an old hand in Brussels and it would not be his first time in the vice-presidential chair of the referenced committee. Should he have the honors, this would be his third term in this position, with a small interval. In fact, there is no surprise; no reason for discontent as there is no new element in the formula. The question is, of course, how the Fidesz MEPs will use these powers.
Tamás Deutsch will be one of the vice-presidents to oversee the efficiency of the EU budget and its compliance with regulations; together with his colleagues they shall oversee the financial management of EU institutions, for example, on the basis of reports by the European Court of Auditors, which formerly had a Hungarian member, Szabolcs Fazakas, whose appointment my colleague, Mr.Deutsch as a member of said commission, tried to prevent by all possible means, reports, leaking and scandals.
But in the same Committee on Budgetary Control, my colleague, Mr. Deutsch sought to obstruct the Sargentini-report on the rule of law in Hungary, later adopted by the majority of the European Parliament. He was so enthusiastic that once he accidentally shed light on one of his own lies.
In a television interview, he claimed that he had been trying to attach modification submissions to the report as the document contained a number of faulty data. He said that, in his view, the number of public procurement procedures that had gone through with a single bid (i.e. played over to Fidesz oligarchs) were much less than the data indicated in the report. Compared to this, the reality soon became clear: none of Deutsch’s modification proposals had a trace in the system, and according to the protocols, at one of the meetings of the Budgetary Control Committee, he himself acknowledged the high number of single-player procurements, although, he said in his defense, that there were similar data pride in other countries as well, that are nothing to be proud of. Therefore we have none, nor should we have any serious expectations from my colleague, Mr. Deutsch, as a genuine and effective guardian of EU funds and European taxpayers’ money, alongside doing substantial professional work (such as his dossier was on the Eurostat Reform Commission).
Should you nonetheless choose to go down this path, let me offer you some help: I would like to draw your attention to the minority report submitted by the committee to the Sargentini-report. For reading, I would recommend the study on the importance of the European Public Prosecutor’s Office, but for monitoring, I would suggest, among other things, the impact of the Elios-scandal on EU funds, the peculiar use of resources by the ‘Road to Work’ program that suggests the responsibility of Flórán Farkas, the financial growth of Lőrinc Mészáros through EU taxpayers’ money and the links between the single-player public procurement contracts referred to earlier, or the background of Fidesz’ residency bonds that provide access to the European Union. To do this, of course, you would have to want to represent the people of Europe, including Hungarian citizens, after your election as vice-president, rather than representing the interests of the National Cooperation System. These are the two options before all Fidesz MEPs, and you have to make a choice. What is that you always say, my dear colleague, Mr. Deutsch: “That’s it.”
dr. István Ujhelyi
7 July, 2019