Published in today’s edition of the Italian Insider.
Bindi vs. De Luca: the political battle goes on
By Florence Brock
NAPLES — President of the Parliament’s Anti-Mafia Commission, Rosy Bindi, has asked the District Attorney’s Office of Naples for more information concerning eventual current investigations going on that involve Campania Region President Vincenzo De Luca’s intervention some days ago where he supposedly asked local politicians to procure ‘yes’ votes for the upcoming national referendum.
The battle between the two goes on: the parliament commission gave a unanimous green light Wednesday to proceed with the request for urgent information from the Republic’s legal office located in the capital city.
Just days after the Campania politician was caught in the eye of a storm for the undesirable words he pronounced against Rosy Bindi off-air during a popular political programme, the governor is once again in the limelight for suspected acts of clientele-ism.
“The Anti-mafia Commission has unanimously appointed me to request urgent information from the Republic’s Prosecutor office in Naples, for any current investigation, any act and/or for any documents in their possession regarding people involved during last week’s encounter, in order to verify the possibility of starting an investigation connected to the subject of the mafia. This is our standard procedure for eventual investigations and even this time we’ll be following the same exact procedure.”
Bindi opened the daily commission session yesterday by stating that the request had come from Grande Autonomie delle Libertà, Forza Italia, Lega, Sinistra italiana and the Five–star Movement groups to look into a possible investigation on the matter.
Presumably, De Luca referred to an audience in the coastal town of Agropoli informing it was necessary to get busy in favour of the referendum vote so as to avoid any repercussions on the government and thus maintain the relationship between the Campania Region and the central government where massive financing of projects in the region needs to continue. Using folkloristic words about fried and grilled fish, De Luca apparently incited local administrators to go out and get ‘yes’ votes in exchange for the delicacies of the south, even at the cost of neglecting their institutional duties.
The commission nonetheless rejected the request to obtain the audio of the encounter for more formal analysis, apparently already in the hands of the Italian paper Il Fatto Quotidiano.
The relationship between the two already started deteriorating when Anti-mafia Commission President Rosy Bindi included the 2105 regional presidential candidate among the names of “unpresentable politicians” for the political elections. De Luca was still involved in accusations of abuse of power for the creation of the Sea Park project in Salerno where he was serving as mayor at the time. Although completely absolved, remnant of the tension that continued between the two led the governor to recently state “she should be killed for being so infamous” off air after a Matrix TV interview.
The southern Italian governor was quick to respond to the commission announcement later in the day: “We have heard the news about the Anti-Mafia Commission. We are curious to know the procedure established for fishing expeditions and how the calamari crusade will evolve.”
Whether or not the regional governor is guilty of breaking the anti-mafia law for instigating an exchange of favours for votes, this new conflict has opened up yet another battleground just 10 days before the nation is called to the urns for the constitutional reform vote on Dec.4.