NGOs: The time for accountability has come

"The transparency and accountability of NGOs have long been sensitive topics for this Commission and very crucial for our Identity and Democracy Group.


In 2019, the European Court of Auditors slammed the Berlaymont for its absolute opacity regarding funds destined for NGOs. It was a warning to which the European leadership offered half-hearted responses, postponing the provision of lists of organizations to the ECA until two years later.


More recent is the Qatargate affair, which embarrassed the entire European Parliament and endangered its institutional prestige by unveiling a system of ad hoc calls for tenders and corruption aimed at transferring resources to an NGO.


It is usual in Brussels to demand a lot from European citizens, imposing on them measures and costs that are more often than not unreasonable, but when it comes to ensuring transparency on how taxpayers' resources are used, the first ones to set a bad example so far have been the Eurobureaucrats themselves.


Consistent with the initiatives already taken by our Group, we will continue to demand even stricter rules on NGOs and the legitimacy of their purposes. This is a dutiful act towards citizens and necessary when public funding is at stake."