European Court of Justice judgment on MEPs' receipts 'simply wrong'

24 September 2018

European Court of Justice judgment on MEPs' receipts 'simply wrong'

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) today ruled against the right of journalists to access receipts showing what Members of the European Parliament actually spent their office expenses allowances on. SP Euro-MP Dennis de Jong, responding to the judgment, said that he found it “totally unjust”, adding that “the argument on the basis of which the Court rejected the request for openness, the right to protection of private data, takes no account of the public function of elected representatives of the people. We are using taxpayers' money and should have to show that it's spent correctly.”

The ECJ's verdict is of importance to any matter which demands open access to documents. “I think that politicians who stand as candidates in the European Parliament elections next year should indicate in advance that they will make their receipts public,” insists De Jong. “Then the voters will know where they stand.” 

The case was brought by a network of journalists from every European country which last year conducted an investigation into spending from MEPs' office expenses allowances.

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