Monday, November 19, 2012

UPDATE European Commission Vacancy: No Christians Need Apply!

We reported last week on the impending appointment of a new EU Commissioner from Malta see article European Commission Vacancy: No Christians NeedApply!

Following a three-hour hearing on Nov. 13 MEPs  have drafted seven pledges for Tonio Borg to commit to. The issue will now come before Parliament for a vote on Wednesday next 21st Nov. See news report from
The Conference of Committee Chairs has yesterday sent an evaluation letter to EP President Martin Schulz concerning the Hearing of Commissioner-designate of Hon. Tonio Borg.

The letter and the full report, including the positions of the ENVI, IMCO and JURI committees of the EP, can be found here.

Tonio Borg will have to deliver a public "unambiguous and full commitment" to seven separate pledges - such as treating all EU citizens equally and support EU policies on women's rights - if he is to be endorsed by a majority of the European Parliament, the chairman of the committee on environment, public health and food safety Matthias Groote MEP said today.

“For Mr Borg to be endorsed by a majority of the House, it is vital that the Commissioner Designate deliver in respect to the following issues and concerns and reaffirm publicly, prior to the final vote in Parliament, his unambiguous an full commitment to:

·      The delivery of the legislative proposal on tobacco products by January 2013
·      The adoption of legislative proposals on animal cloning and novel food by mid-2013
·      The full respect of the March 2013 deadline for the ban on animal testing for cosmetics
·      Better enforcement of EU law in particular on animal transport
·      Fuly respect and abide by the EU charter of fundamental human rights in particular of Articla 21 thereof as well as the EU anti-discrimination legislation and case law
·      Recognising the innate dignity of all Citizens of the EU, regardless of their sexual orientation or distinctions mentioned in Article 21, and to treating as a Commissioner of Health and Consumer Policy and as a member of the College of Commissioners, all citizens of the EU fairly and equally; actively working to address health inequalities and to acting against the stigmatisation of people suffering from HIV/AIDS
·      Actively support EU policies with regards to women’s rights.

“There are substantiated reasons to believe that, if the above pledges are made, a constructive co-operation between the European Parliament and the Commissioner Designate could ensue and that Mr Borg would eventually be able to demonstrate by his actions that the reservations held against him were groundless.”

The Conference of Presidents has also set the date for the vote on Commissioner-designate for Wednesday 21 November at about midday.

The deadline for amendments (time in which groups of MEPs may submit a resolution on the topic) has been set for Tuesday at 9pm.

The vote in the Plenary is now scheduled for next Wednesday, 21 November, in Strasbourg.