Posted in Angelika Werthmann in der Presse
Austrian Independent - 15.07.2010
Austrian Member of the European Parliament (MEP) Angelika Werthmann has revealed she left MEP Hans-Peter Martin’s fraction over his shady handling of subsidies.
The politician from Salzburg announced yesterday (Weds) she planned to become an independent MEP after quitting Martin’s department in the European Parliament (EP) due to "disagreement over various political issues".
Werthmann said today Martin’s failure to publicly declare how he spent the millions of Euros of state subsidies he has received since 2004 tempted her to walk out, slashing his fraction to just two seats.
Martin, a former front runner for the Austrian Social Democrats (SPÖ), received 4.2 million Euros in public support for election campaigning handed out to parties and individuals depending on their success.
Martin’s list won almost 14 per cent in the elections for the EP in 2004 before he failed to enter the Austrian federal parliament two years later. He came third in last year’s EP ballot with almost 18 per cent of the overall vote.
Werthmann claimed today she has asked Martin several times how he spent the millions of Euros of election campaign costs compensation without getting any explanation.
Martin – who scored a bestseller with the book "Die Globalisierungsfalle" (The Global Trap) in 1996 – announced after the 2009 vote he planned to use the subsidies helping young people to work in the EP.
A donation of 100,000 Euros to the Integrationshaus, a Viennese charity, is the only revealed payment Martin has done so far, according to reports.
Political analyst Hubert Sickinger, an expert on the Austrian party-financing system, said Martin could "easily" invalidate accusations by disclosing payment activities.
Martin has made an international name for himself by uncovering how many MEPs get the most out of the European bureaucratic system of privileges, often by filming them with hidden cameras or secretly taping conversations.
He took some months off last month after allegedly suffering a nervous breakdown.
The Bregenz-born politician failed to comment on Werthmann’s departure and her accusations, while his deputy Martin Ehrenhauser accused her of "recklessly deceiving voters".