The UKIP backed initiative to censure EU Commission President, Jose Barroso, looks set to flop this week, as five signatories may be forced to withdraw their support.
Last week, UKIP leader in the European Parliament Nigel Farage, scraped together 77 signatures from fellow MEP's demanding that President Barroso explain an alleged conflict of interest with a shipping billionaire, Spiros Latsis. This included five Conservative MEP's.
In order to put the issue on the agenda it is required that a minimum of 74 MEP's must sign up to the motion. This now looks in doubt as Timothy Kirkhope, leader of Conservatives in the European Parliament, has written to five of his MEP's including Roger Helmer,Christopher Heaton-Harris, David Sumberg, and Martin Callanan demanding they remove their names from the motion or face "very serious consequences."
However, even if the motion is put on the agenda it is certain to fail. The leaders of the three main political parties in the European Parliament, comprising the majority of MEPs have already issued a statement condemning the publicity seeking motives behind the motion.
This comes as a blow to UKIP who had hoped that the censure debate, which is scheduled to take place on the eve of the French referendum on the EU constitution, would influence French voters towards a 'no' vote.
Source: UKIP, The Scotsman