Federation of Catholic Family Associations in Europe

Campaign against fundamental freedoms

Campaign against fundamental freedoms: Maltese European Commission Candidate Tonio Borg hearing at the European Parliament 13 November 2012

An aggressive campaign is currently being conducted to oust the catholic Maltese Commissioner designate Tonio Borg: LGBT, atheist secularist and pro-abortion lobbies attempt to discredit Tonio Borg based on his personal beliefs and opinions.

Fundamental rights such as freedom of conscience, belief and opinion are put at stake as the personal values of Mr Borg are depicted as incompatible with the European values.

However, the fundamental rights are the core values on which the European Union is founded and apply to all citizens, including European Commissioners.

Following John Dalli’s resignation as European Commissioner, a new Maltese Commissioner designate will be appointed by the European Council as Health and Consumer Protection Commissioner. Every EU Member State is entitled to provide one Commissioner. The European Parliament gives its approval of the commissioner designate following a public hearing of the competent parliamentary committees. The candidate nominated by the Maltese Government is Tonio Borg, currently Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Malta, he is a member of the governing party PN (member of the EPP, European Peoples Party).

On Tuesday 13 November a public hearing will take place in the European Parliament with the Members of 3 parliamentary committees: “Environment, Public Health and Food Safety” (ENVI), Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO), and Agriculture and Rural Development (AGRI). The hearing will last 3 hours, starting at 15.00. Members of the 3 Committees will take the floor to ask their questions to Mr Borg. It will be webstreamed (here).

In the debate prior to the hearing issues are raised by the LGBT lobby and the IPPF related to family, definition of marriage and abortion. However, these areas are not part of the European Union’s legal and political competency as laid down in the EU Treaty, but clearly fall within the competency of the Member States only. The principle of subsidiarity applies to all these areas. 

Moreover, according to the Code of Conduct for Commissioners[i] ((2011) 2094) the personal views of a Commissioner shall not influence the decisions by the Commission. The candidate has clearly stated his intention to respect the Code of Conduct for Commissioners, namely in his written answers[ii] to the questions of the European Parliament available in all EU languages here.

You can read more about the issues at stake in our information note.


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