Arch Eurocrat Herman Van Rompuy will pocket almost 22 times the UK average salary over the next three years. The former EU Council President will get 55 per cent of his full salary, which works out at £133,723 a year until December 2017, paid for by taxpayers as Europe struggles with crippling unemployment.
The Telegraph discovered that he will also receive a one off payment of £21,000 when he reaches the age of 67 on top of his lifetime EU pension worth £52,000 a year.
Totted up, this makes £578,000 to ease him back into his life now he no longer leads the EU Council.
And as with other EU bureaucrats he will only pay the a special level of “community tax”, considerably lower than the rates paid by ordinary workers on the Continent.
His allowances, which are also granted to other outgoing politicians such as Baroness Ashton, are defended as “the price of independence” since they have to ask permission to undertake any job within 18 months of leaving. The aim is that with this huge pay bounty, they will not do any work and compromise them or the EU.
Instead, Mr Van Rompuy can retire to a quiet life of writing Haikus and occasionally giving lectures at the EU Official training school called the ‘College of Europe’.
The payments were attacked by UKIP leader Nigel Farage who helped Mr Van Rompuy achieve some level of fame when he said he had “the charisma or a damp rag and the appearance of a low grade bank clerk.”
“Van Rompuy’s term in office has seen millions driven into poverty and unemployment by the eurozone crisis but he himself has hit the jackpot. The EU is a racket which looks after its own,” he said.
The news comes as Spanish unemployment is revealed to be over 4.5 million, second only to the disaster hit Greek economy.
And unlike Mr Van Rompuy, an extra two million people in the UK could be dragged into the higher tax bracket of 40p which was supposed to be for people earning significant salaries but now captures teachers and policemen thanks to years of surreptitious tax raising.
The position of President of the European Council has now been taken over by former Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk. He was lured to the post by a salary five times what he was earning when he was a properly elected politician.
It was apparently his wife Malgorzata who persuaded him to take the job because of “prestige, better money and less problems at work.”