Paola Testori Coggi’s resignation will take effect on 31st October and follows an internal investigation that found she had violated tender policy in 2012 by notifying an NGO of a food-related study before it had been made public.
Coggi cancelled the study and tender after she realised her error but a whistleblower flagged the incident - with discipline proceedings culminating in her resignation earlier this month. A criminal investigation by the European Anti-fraud Office (OLAF) was dropped after no evidence of commercial gain was detected, and her colleagues have since said this was an unfortunate blip on an otherwise impeccable and highly respected reputation within European Union institutions.
The Commission said that a temporary replacement would be in place from November 1st, with deputy Ladislav Miko likely to assume the mantle before a permanent replacement was recruited.
“No formal decision yet, but as a general rule - and in the absence of a contrary decision by the College - the acting role goes to the next person in seniority, which would be Ladislav Miko,” the Commission’s spokesperson for inter-institutional relations and administration, Antony Gravili, told NutraIngredients.
Miko has held the position of deputy director general responsible for the food chain within the health and consumer’s unit since 2011, before which he worked with the directorate general for environment.
Within Czech politics his roles came in varying environmental forms, including for a brief period in 2009 the position of minister for environment.
Miko has a PhD in zoology and ecology from the Charles University in Prague and is also a board member of the Czech Environmental Partnership Foundation.