BERLIN вЂ” Ursula von der Leyen is planning a brand new job as European Commission chief in Brussels, however the German protection minister still has concerns to respond to home.
An investigative committee associated with the German parliament вЂ” the most challenging tool that lawmakers may use to probe government misdeeds вЂ” is searching into just how profitable agreements from her ministry had been awarded to outside experts without the right oversight, and whether a community of casual individual connections facilitated those discounts.
In addition to lawmakers looking at the scenario state von der Leyen will still need to face their concerns even in the event this woman is verified as Commission president in a vote when you look at the European Parliament on Tuesday.
вЂњWhatever job Ms. von der Leyen has within the future wonвЂ™t modification at all the fact that the committee will subpoena and concern her,вЂќ said Tobias Lindner, a part of parliament plus the safety policy representative for the Greens opposition celebration.
вЂњWhat took place in past times when you look at the protection ministry under her leadership happened вЂ” and we’ll reach the base of that.вЂќ
The auditorsвЂ™ main critique wasnвЂ™t that the ministry taken care of outside expertise. Instead, it had been concerning the method agreements had been granted.
Von der Leyen and her ministry declined needs for interviews with this tale. Final November, she told the parliament that is german have been вЂњmistakesвЂќ in just just how external professionals had been employed and said вЂњthis never ever need to have occurred.вЂќ But she defended the employment of such specialists, saying that they had been needed to undertake an enormous overhaul associated with ministry.
Von der Leyen blamed the nagging issues on an assortment of negligence, corner-cutting and errors by people overwhelmed by their work. But others have actually submit a less innocent description вЂ” that some professionals had privileged use of ministry officials that aided them circumvent rules and win contracts well worth millions of euros.
That von der Leyen herself was part of this network, the increased use of external consultants has been a hallmark of her tenure as defense minister although there is no suggestion.
Interviews with users of the investigative committee, witness testimony and documents acquired by POLITICO all recommend external professionals have now been in a position to gain growing impact regarding the internal workings of this protection ministry throughout the five . 5 years that von der Leyen has been doing fee.
Whenever von der Leyen faces the committee, she will probably additionally face questions regarding an interior inquiry by her ministry in to the event | Odd Andersen/AFP via Getty Images
вЂњright from the start it absolutely was Ms. von der LeyenвЂ™s desire and intention that is political outside specialists would gain influence,вЂќ said Matthias HГ¶hn, a part of parliament and also the representative on safety policy for the left-wing Die Linke celebration.
Whenever von der Leyen faces the committee, she will probably additionally face questions regarding an inquiry that is internal her ministry in to the event. A member of parliament for the center-left Social Democrats (SPD) in that investigation, вЂњcentral questions werenвЂ™t asked, suspicions werenвЂ™t followed up,вЂќ said Dennis Rohde.
вЂњAll of the, me, was a crude attempt to distract from misconduct and cover up for people among the leadership,вЂќ Rohde added if you ask.
Critique associated with the ministry on the scandal has arrived from multiple opposition events plus the SPD, the partner that is junior GermanyвЂ™s coalition government. Users of von der LeyenвЂ™s conservative camp have actually supported her plus the ministry but also many of them have now been lower than full-throated within their protection.
HereвЂ™s the lowdown on whatвЂ™s become referred to as BerateraffГ¤re (consultant scandal):