I have been together with John Dalli, the Health Commissioner who was dismissed by the President of the European Commission Jose Manuel Barroso on 16 October, 2012 without even being given the opportunity to learn what he was accused of, and without even giving him the chance to consult with his lawyer and family. Dalli never signed any written resignation despite being offered a resignation text in the presence of two witnesses and under tremendous psychological pressures.
Since the first day of this crisis, I have listened to his story, asked him many questions and became quickly certain that he was the victim of a conspiracy.
As time passed, the detailed version of events the former commissioner carefully explained to me has remained constant.
John Dalli‘s account has not changed in even the smallest detail. He has not had to ‚clarify‘ a single remark.
This cannot be said for those who have been making accusations against him. Their story gets more twisted and convoluted every month.
Today, the ‚official‘ version of events is completely incompatible with the stories that are now emerging.
We believe in the rule of law and in the accountability of our political leaders and the administrations they control. This is why we have pursued this story and we are getting to the moment when we can say what happened, name those who are guilty of corruption and maladministration, the day when we will speak truth to power.
Now it is Dalli’s time; the time of truth which will be unveilled in the Courts.
On 6 December, 2012, John Dalli accompanied by his Belgian lawyers Fernand Schmitz and Sophie Cuykens filed a «Plainte avec constitution de partie civile» that is a penal suit, against the company Swedish Match, responsible for filing a Complaint against Dalli with the European Commission.
On 20 March, 2013, John Dalli testified before Olivier Hastir of the Belgian judiciary police on the case. His statement lasted three and a half hours and among other actions, Dalli deposited the tape recording of the conversation between MEP Olivier Bové and two officials of Swedish Match, recorded the day before at Bové’s office at the European Parliament in Brussels. During this conversation, one of them, Johann Gabriellson, said that a meeting described by Swedish match lawyer, Gayle Kimberly, in which she claimed to have met with Zammit, who then asked for the money in return for a favorable directive, never in fact took place.
Now it is not excluded that the Belgian authorities will invite the various Commission officials involved, to testify.
Furthermore, on 24 December, 2012 the lawyers of John Dalli, Ariti-Marina Alamanou, member of the Athens Bar, Laure Levi and Stéphane Rodrigues, members of the Brussels Bar, filed an application with the European Court of Justice (case D9160) on his behalf against the European Commission for violation of Article 245 of the Treaty.
Until today, the Commission did not present their first comments despite the two month (plus 10 days) deadline, to present their case, expiring in the beginning of March.
On 17 October, 2012, during the European People’s Party Congress in Bucharest, when the Commission president was asked to explain the party what happened the day before with John Dalli (an EPP Commissioner) he replied, «The Dalli case is closed, trust me.»
It should be noted that the European People’s Party, never asked any explanation from Dalli about the dismissal, limiting itself to the «trust me» assurances of Barroso. Whether this attitude was politically correct is something our readers will judge.
On my side, all I can say is that John Dalli is an innocent man and the well set trap did not work, simply because the unpredictable happened. Indeed, while everybody involved in this case was confident beyond any doubt that Dalli would be scared by Barroso and under the intimidation or terror he would have immediately signed his resignation, he did not.
This was the “black swan” which acted as a strange attractor in the unfolding chaotic explosion, which may affect even the re-election of President Barroso for a third term.
Basil A. Coronakis