Commissioner Dalli’s resignation raises questions

Published on 22 October 2012 at 14:14

“The questions are multiplying in the Dalli case,” writes the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. On October 16 John Dalli, the Maltese European Commissioner for Health and Consumer Policy, was forced to resign after the European Anti-Fraud Office mentioned his name in an enquiry into influence peddling. Now, however, it is OLAF that is being challenged. The office is accused of passing the information on Dalli on to the Maltese justice ministry without informing the Supervisory Committee of OLAF, which is tasked with “protecting the rights of persons under investigation.” In the daily’s view —

If Dalli truly is guilty of having known of the advances made to the tobacco lobby by a Maltese entrepreneur [Silvio Zammit, who claimed to be close to Dalli] and did nothing to stop them, the justice department of Malta will have to look into the matter. That is what the EU rules stipulate. However, OLAF, the anti-corruption office, seems to have ridden roughshod over these rules when it came to passing this information on to Malta.

John Dalli, meanwhile, wholly rejects accusations of attempted solicitation of a bribe and is now accusing the President of the European Commission, José Manuel Barroso, of having forced him to resign.

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