Hollande Promises Reporting Measures Following Budget Minister Scandal

President François Hollande Photo: flickr.com/jmayrault

President François Hollande
Photo: flickr.com/jmayrault

After Wednesday’s weekly cabinet meeting on April 10, French President Francois Hollande gave a press conference where he detailed a plan to make politician’s private finances more transparent. Following the scandalous resignation of his budget minister, Jérôme Cahuzac, last month, Hollande pledged to act immediately to prevent such corruption, introducing the strictest reporting requirements for politicians in Europe.

All government ministers will have to report their sources of income as well as their financial assets by April 15 of this year. The law detailing these measures is scheduled to go before the cabinet on April 24. If and when such a law passes, members of parliament, heads of local government, and heads of administrative bodies will have to report their earnings as well.

Hollande defended these exhaustive measures, stating, “Elected officials must be respected, and transparency is what allows respect […] The choices I have made will prevent the return of scandals that have harmed our country for too many years.”

Germany and Britain already require all their government officials to disclose their sources of income, though not all of their personal assets.

Several members of the opposition, Union pour un Mouvement Populaire (UMP), have already expressed misgivings and criticism. Francois Copé, a prominent leader in the party, called the reporting measures a “smokescreen to hide a minister who lied” in an interview with France 2. He added, “I don’t want to play this game of voyeurism and hypocrisy.”

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