Broadcasting board meets again on RBB . crisis
As interim chairman, who should lead the Fed out of its worst crisis in the next few months? There is no official name yet. The search may take some time.
WDue to the crisis at RBB due to allegations of nepotism, the ARD public broadcasting board met again for a special meeting in Berlin.
One of the items on the agenda was “Crisis Management – The Future of Management”. At first, there was a lengthy debate about whether the session should be public – in the end the audience was left out.
It is unlikely that the interim manager’s name will now be definitively determined. “Fast shots are forbidden,” Acting Monitoring Committee Chairman Dieter Pinckney told dpa in advance. At the end of the week, Friedrich von Kirchbach, president of the Broadcasting Council, resigned.
In the meantime, the search is still ongoing for an interim director of Rundfunk Berlin-Brandenburg (RBB). The current administration has come under fire for its handling of the allegations against director Patricia Schlesinger, who was fired without warning. The editorial board of the Asia Pacific Regional Office called for a closed resignation. ARD directors have made it clear that they have lost confidence in RBB’s leadership – an unprecedented event in ARD history.
Managing Director Hagen Brandstätter currently runs the business. As Brandstäter was on sick leave, the longest-serving manager – Program Director Jan Schulte Kellenhaus – took over the management of the business. Legal Director Susan Lang attended the Broadcasting Board meeting. The board members were there, too.
The RBB board, as the second watchdog, spoke in favor of an interim solution on Monday. On Tuesday, there was a meeting of commission representatives with state representatives from Berlin and Brandenburg at the State Chancellery in Potsdam-Brandenburg which is currently under the legal supervision of RBB.
In a decision, RBB employees also demanded an opinion on the appointment of a temporary leader and a future director. This must also be recorded in the RBB state contract.
Ex-Intendatin Patricia Schlesinger has been subject to numerous allegations since the end of June, particularly through reports from the online broker Business Insider. She has served as President of ARD since the beginning of the year and Director of RBB since 2016. She has resigned from both positions.
In addition to Schlesinger, the scandal also centers on the outgoing RBB chairman, Wolf-Dieter Wolf. Both rejected the allegations against them. Among other things, it concerns the controversial consultancy contracts for the RBB construction project, the agreements between the two on salary and about bonuses for Schlesinger. And it’s on orders from her husband, former “Spiegel” journalist Gerhard Spurl, at Messe Berlin – where Wolff was also the chief supervisor until recently. The Berlin Public Prosecutor’s Office is investigating the three on suspicion of infidelity and accepting benefits. It is a presumption of innocence.
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