Vatican’s chief auditor in surprise resignation

What happened?

The Vatican’s auditor- general, Libero Milone, has resigned, in the latest apparent setback for Vatican financial reform. Milone was appointed in 2015 to look for evidence of mismanagement and possible corruption in Vatican financial dealings. He was supposed to stay for at least five years.

A brief statement said that Milone had offered his resignation and Pope Francis had accepted it. Last year, the Vatican suspended an audit by PriceWaterhouseCoopers.

What the media are saying

Tom Kington of the Times said Milone’s time had not been easy: not everyone welcomed this distinguished financial expert, who had been given the right “to open any filing cabinet or computer as the Pope tried to end decades of mismanagement and sleaze”. Some people had evidently felt threatened: “Mr Milone’s own computer and office were broken into in late 2015.”

Reuters correspondent Philip Pullella quoted an anonymous Vatican source as saying: “It’s a pretty ugly situation and I hope it does not get worse.” The source said, according to Pullella, that “there had been a ‘clash of operational styles’ between Milone and the departments his office audited” – particularly Apsa, which manages the Vatican’s property holdings and human resources.

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