The European ombudsman Emily O’Reilly wrote to the President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, requesting him to clarify the position of the Commission regarding the new capacity of his predecessor, José Manuel Barroso, at Goldman Sachs, which has “generated concern at a time of many challenges for the EU,” she wrote. In the letter, Mrs. O’Reilly asks Jean-Claude Juncker to explain what measures the Commission has taken to verify whether the new activities of Mr. Barroso are in accordance with the moral obligations considered under the Treaty of Lisbon and whether the Commission is considering revising the Code of Conduct for Commissioners.
“Mr. Barroso’s choice has generated concern at a time full of challenges for the EU, particularly regarding the trust of citizens in its institutions,” stressed Emily O’Reilly in her written message. “This is clearly a matter of public interest and the Commission must respond publicly and in-depth.”
The matter of whether José Manuel Barroso’s new position, in charge of advising the Goldman Sachs bank regarding Brexit, is in accordance with the Code of Conduct of Commissioners, as the Commission states, raises questions on the adequacy of the Code of Conduct itself, indicated the ombudsman, who has given the Commission until October 14th for answering her questioning.