Matanyahu Englman

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Matanyahu Englman

Matanyahu Englman (Hebrew: מתניהו אנגלמן; b. 1966) is the State Comptroller of Israel.

Background[edit]

Before being elected by the Knesset to the State Comptroller position in June 2019,[1] he served as CEO for the Council for Higher Education in Israel. Before that, during 2014-2018, he was the CEO of the Technion. He is the first non-judge to be elected to the oversight role in over three decades and is considered as having a less-activist, more conservative approach to the position.[2] A favourite of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, he succeeded over the other State Comptroller candidate, Giora Romm.

State Comptroller reforms[edit]

Permits Committee reform[edit]

In August 2019, three members of the Permits Committee resigned after their level of autonomy was reduced by Englman. The Committee is made out of six judges who decide whether to permit ethical requests from ministers. This includes an outstanding case on permitting Prime Minister Netanyahu to finance his legal defense for the investigations involving him from relatives or through donations.[3] A few weeks later, Englman's pick for chairperson of the Permits Committee announced she has declined the position.[4]

In September 2019, after having been denied twice by the Permits Committee, Englman approved Netanyahu's request to receive a $2 million loan for his legal defense from American businessman Spencer Partridge. The decision has come under criticism, with the Movement for Quality Government in Israel calling it "strange and suspicious."[5]

Political Corruption Department abolished[edit]

In September 2019, the Attorney General, Avichai Mandelblit, and State Attorney, Shai Nitzan, sought clarifications from Englman after the latter had abolished the State Comptroller's influential Political Corruption Department.[6][7]

Personal life[edit]

Born in Rehovot, his mother Hasia, was the daughter of educator Yehuda Kiel, while his father, Benjamin Englman was a physicist who worked in the Soreq Nuclear Research Center. A bookkeeper by profession, Englman is married with six children. He and his wife, Esther Abigail (the daughter of Moshe Mendelbaum, former governor of the Bank of Israel), both reside in Nof Ayalon.

References[edit]