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Monday, February 6, 2012


VATICAN CITY, 4 FEB 2012 (VIS) - Given below is the text of a declaration released at midday today by the Presidency of the Governorate of Vatican City State. The declaration bears the signatures of Cardinal Giovanni Lajolo, president emeritus of the Governorate; Archbishop Giuseppe Bertello, current president; Bishop Giuseppe Sciacca, secretary general, and Bishop Giorgio Corbellini, former vice secretary general.

  (1) The illicit publication of two letters by Archbishop Carlo Maria Vigano, the first addressed to the Holy Father on 27 March 2011 and the second to the Cardinal Secretary of State on 8 May, is a cause of great bitterness for the Governorate of Vatican City State.

  The assertions contained in those letters cannot but give rise to the impression that the Governorate of Vatican City State, rather than being an instrument of responsible government, is a body unworthy of trust, at the mercy of obscure powers. Having carefully examined the contents of the two letters, the Presidency of the Governorate feels the duty to declare publicly that the aforesaid assertions are the result of incorrect evaluations, or are based on fears not backed up by evidence, indeed openly contradicted by the principle figures called to witness them.

  Without entering into the merits of the individual assertions, the Presidency of the Governorate feels the need to draw attention to the following proven elements.

  (2) The consolidated budget and financial statements of the Governorate, following approval by the Pontifical Commission for Vatican City State, are regularly submitted to the Prefecture for the Economic Affairs of the Holy See, which examines them in its own offices as well as having them examined by its college of international auditors. Moreover, the Prefecture has at all times the power to examine, without prior warning, the documentation of all offices of the Governorate, in the process of their preparation.

  (3) As is well known, the financial investments of the Governorate, entrusted to external managers, suffered significant losses during the great international crisis of 2008. According to the accounting standards established by the Prefecture for the Economic Affairs of the Holy See, which accord with the criteria followed in Italy, those losses were also distributed over the financial year of 2009 which, therefore, showed a loss of euro 7,815,000. However, it must be made clear that, despite the financial loses, the economic and functional administration of the Governorate remained in the black. The move from the negative euro 7,815,000 of the consolidated budget of 2009 to the positive (final) result of euro 21,043,000 for 2010 was mainly due to two factors: the management of the financial investments of the Governorate, which the cardinal president entrusted to the Extraordinary Section of APSA in 2009 and, to an even greater extent, to the excellent results of the Vatican Museums.

  (4) Tenders for works of a certain importance (such as, for example, the ongoing restoration of the Colonnade of St. Peter's Square or the construction of the St. Joseph Fountain) are assigned via standard bidding procedures and after examination by an "ad hoc" commission, instituted on each occasion by the cardinal president. For works of lesser importance, the Directorate of Technical Services uses its own personnel, or well known and well qualified external firms, on the basis of the prices in use in Italy.

  (5) The Presidency of the Governorate of Vatican City State expresses its complete trust in, and respect for, the members of the Finance and Management Committee. It thanks them for having made such an essential contribution, with great professionalism and giving up no small amount of their time, without any expense to the Governorate, and trusts it will be able to continue to draw on their advice in the future.

  The Presidency likewise confirms its complete trust in its administrative offices and collaborators. All suspicions and accusations have, following careful examination, been shown to be unfounded, as have(almost to the point of seeming laughable) news reports - fruit of a certain kind of highly superficial journalism - that telephones were tapped and rooms bugged as part of a merely administrative and disciplinary procedure!

  (6) The presidency is well aware of the fact that the administration of the Governorate, though already well organised and productive, could be further improved in accordance with the recommendations made by the McKinsey management consultancy firm, commission by the cardinal president in 2009 at the suggestion of the Finance and Management Committee. The implementation of the improvements suggested by McKinsey, which began some time ago, will continue in the same spirit. It must be highlighted that the transparency and rigour, so meritoriously pursued by the previous Presidency, is also being practised by the current directors with the same commitment and serenity.

  (7) The entire Governorate - Presidency, directors, bureau chiefs, officials and workers - wishes to reaffirm its firm and joint desire to continue to dedicate all its energies to serving the Supreme Pontiff with complete faithfulness and integrity, aware of the great honour and responsibility it has in being at the service of the Pope.
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