EP committees elected 10 Poles, including former PM Jerzy Buzek and Jaroslaw Walesa, son of the former Solidarity leader, to powerful posts within the newly elected chamber on Monday.
Jerzy Buzek, an MEP for the centre-right Civic Platform (PO) party and former president of the European Parliament, was selected as chairperson of the Industry, Research and Energy committee.
Czeslaw Siekierski (PSL) was appointed head of the Committee for Agriculture and former EU regions commissioner Danuta Huebner (PO) was chosen to lead the Committee on Constitutional Affairs.
Civic Platform MEP Jaroslaw Walesa was elected on Monday night as deputy-chairman of the Fisheries Committee and Barbara Kudrycka and Danuta Jazłowiecka were chosen as vice-chairs at the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs and Justice committee’s respectively, in the election process last night made by a secret ballot of MEPs, which involved horse trading by the largest voting blocs within the European Parliament after May elections.
Under the D’Hondt system of appointment, committee posts are distributed among the political parties proportionate to the number of elected MEPs, with the European People’s Party (EPP), of which Civic Platform and PSL are members, remains the largest bloc within the parliament, though strong gains were made by anti-immigration and anti-austerity parties in the May elections.
The conservative Law and Justice (PiS) party also strengthened its position on many committees, with MEP Ryszard Legutko as vice-chairman at Foreign Affairs, Tomasz Poręba as vice-chair on the Tourism and Transport committee, Janusz Wojciechowski as vice-chair on the Agriculture and Rural Development committee and former Polish foreign minister Anna Fotyga will lead the sub-committee on Security and Defence.
Ryszard Czarnecki (Law and Justice) was elected as one of 14 deputy presidents of the European Parliament last week.
Neo-Nazi on human rights committee
Meanwhile, a German neo-Nazi MEP has taken a seat on the parliament’s Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee.
Udo Voigt, the former leader of the Nationaldemokratische Partei Deutschlands (NPD) – a non-aligned member of the parliament – has claimed in the past that “no more than 340,000 Jews” died during the Holocaust – historians put the figure at around 6 million.
“The European Parliament is the place where the representatives of the European people work hard to ensure a good and peaceful future for us on our continent,” Martin Schulz, re-elected as president of the European Parliament said on Monday.
“There is no place for racists and anti-Semites in this house,” he added.
The NPD received one percent in Germany during the European parliamentary elections. (pg)
Source: Polskie Radio dla Zagranicy