Sajjad has called on the European Parliament to open up an investigation into the UK Independence Party’s finances.
Speaking in the wake of revelations that a UKIP MEP’s chief of staff allegedly accepted a bogus restaurant receipt – due for reimbursement – for almost treble the correct amount, Sajjad called on the President of the European Parliament to review the party’s expense claims.
Sajjad told BBC Radio 4′s The World at One and SKY News:”It seems based upon the immediate reaction that we have seen in press reports that it isn’t an isolated case. I think there are now plenty of grounds to put forward an argument to the President of the European Parliament, Martin Schulz, to open up a much wider investigation into this particular grouping’s finances
“Based upon what I have seen so far, this does not seem to be an isolated incident in so far as this UKIP MEP is concerned. Therefore it is only right that a much wider investigation into UKIP activities and the way in which they operate their funding is carried out”
Sajjad who chairs the European Parliament’s anti-sleaze advisory committee on the conduct of members, also rejected the notion that British people would think that all MEPs were fiddling their expenses, saying:
“I certainly do not believe this is widespread as far as Members of the European Parliament are concerned. However, we need to ensure that that the public are confident money is being used in an appropriate way.
“The rules are very clear and very stringent. There is a need to provide receipts for actual expenditure incurred in order to receive that money back. If there has been a falsification of the amount on the receipt which appears to be the case then that is clearly a breech of the rule and potentially a criminal offence.”