Not on my watch. While the Qatargate scandal keeps sending shockwaves through the Italian political world, the Speaker of the Italian Parliament’s Lower House, Lorenzo Fontana, stressed the need for a code of conduct to prevent “opaque foreign influences” from impacting the institution.
- Il Corriere della Sera reports an advisory committee on the conduct of deputies for this legislature will be established shortly.
- “I will ask for efforts from all groups for legislative initiatives [so as to] make deputies free from any foreign influence. Italy is a free country as long as its representatives are free,” he argued.
ICYMI: alongside the European Parliament’s Greek Vice President, Eva Kaili, Italian MEP-turned-NGO Antonio Panzeri is allegedly accused of having received bribes from Qatar to influence European legislation.
- Authorities in Belgium, Greece and Italy seized €1.5 million in cash, confiscated electronic devices and charged two more individuals with the alleged offences.
The issue “does not concern public financing for parties, the problem is more serious: there are very rich countries that use tools to influence the policies of other countries,” explained Mr Fontana, who also called upon the Chamber’s employees, other officials and all institutions to exert rigour.
- He added they must resist “the influences of states and some multinationals that are even more powerful than states.”