Buitenen giving up on the EU

The Brussels office for whistle-blower MEP Paul Van Buitenen has told
Accountancy Age that the Dutchman will not be standing for a second
term of office on the European Parliament in June.

Van Buitenen is a former winner of the Accountancy Age Personality
of the Year Award (1999) and one of the most accountancy-literate lawmakers the
EP possesses. He has a bookkeeping diploma and, before politics, was assistant
auditor in the European Commission’s financial control directorate. He has been
a member of the parliament’s budgetary control committee and his whistle-blowing
brought down the Jacques Santer commission.

The admission follows reports in the Amsterdam Telegraaf and
Netherlands television that Van Buitenen was not planning to renew his electoral
mandate. A formal statement from the MEP has been promised but is still awaited.

Before making his decision, he said earlier this year in an interview he was
mulling over his decision: ‘If I don’t try for re-election,’ he said on that
occasion, ‘it will mean my opponents have won.’

On the Dutch television programme KRO Reporter aired on Sunday, Van
Buitenen noted during his time as an MEP from 2004-2009, he had ‘revealed a lot
of irregularities within the EU institutions but none of these findings have
lead to further investigation by the EU anti-fraud office OLAF and the relevant
judicial authorities’.

A briefing note from the programme said: ‘Instead of initiating a serious
investigation, the European Commission, the European Parliament, and OLAF choose
to look away. Under these circumstances, Paul van Buitenen sees no ground for

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