The Bureau of the Union of European Federalists considers the results of the recent Eurobarometer survey revealing a high level of ignorance among Europeans about the European Constitution to be more than worrying in regard of the upcoming national referendums in about ten member states.
A third of the Europeans stated that they had never heard about the Constitution. Only 11 percent think that they broadly know its contents. And in some member states such as the United Kingdom - which is the only country where the number of respondents opposing the Constitution is higher than that of those in favour - the results are even more worrying. "With only some weeks to go before the first national referenda, we strongly urge the European Commission and particularly Mrs. Wallström, the Commissioner responsible for Communication, to inform the public about this historic European project. To have the Constitution ratified in 25 countries and by about ten referendums is a crucial challenge", said Jo Leinen, President of UEF and MEP. "The Constitution must be ratified if we want to secure a peaceful and democratic future for the European Union."
"The citizens need to know why the Constitution is necessary to make Europe work and how it affects their daily lives", Mr. Leinen stated. "Mrs. Wallström has stated on several occasions that the Commission will make its case for the Constitution. However, not much has happened since the new College came into office. The Federalists urge on her and her colleagues not to waste more time and take action immediately."
UEF has committed itself to actively take part in the campaign for the ratification of the European Constitution together with the European Movement, the Young European Federalists and any other European-wide organisation such as NGO's, business organisations, trade unions and European political parties. The "YES" Campaign for the ratification of the Constitution was officially launched on 19 January.
Note to editors
The UEF, founded in 1946, is an independent and non-governmental European organisation, campaigning for a federal Europe. Since April 2005, it is presided over by Mrs. Mercedes BRESSO, President of the Italian Region of Piedmont, Member of the EU Committee of the Regions.