Tuesday, November 08, 2011

Pakistan Austrian MEP Asks EC About Funds Given to Pakistan and How They Were Used

SOURCE Office of MEP Angelika Werthmann

The Austrian Member of the European Parliament Angelika Werthmann has rightly asked the European Commission on October 6 about how the more than 500 Million Euros in aid has been used by Pakistan. The European Commission has been giving aid to Pakistan since 1976. Ms. Werthmann is a Member of the Budget Committee in the European Parliament and is a Member of the Delegation for Relations with South Asia.

Keeping in mind the bad track record of the Pakistani government on corruption, the embezzlement of large parts of the European funds is likely. Even Transparency International is not able to create a report, as the organisation complains about corruption of the local office in Islamabad, which is known for receiving bribes from the government in place.

Eighty percent of the EU funds transferred to Pakistan are distributed via local NGOs. Who controls these NGOs? And who makes sure that they are not simply "puppet organisations" created by the Pakistani government? More importantly, how exactly are the remaining twenty percent being used by the government itself.

MEP Werthmann will continue to investigate this potential waste of European tax payers' money and hopes for the active support of the European Commission. "If we find proof of misuse of European funds in Pakistan, we need to stop the transfer of payments as fast as possible," Ms. Werthmann said.