Opposition politicians in the Norwegian Parliament are not satisfied with answers they’ve received to their questions about how Jens Stoltenberg won the job to be Norway’s new central bank chief. The hiring process is under probe by the Parliament’s disciplinary committee, and its members now have more questions.
They initially sent 21 questions to both Finance Minister Trygve Slagsvold Vedum of the Center Party and Prime Minister Jonas Gahr Støre of the Labour Party. “We haven’t received sufficient answers to everything we’re wondering about,” committee leader Peter Frølich of the Conservative Party told state broadcaster NRK on Wednesday.
News bureau NTB reported that Støre, an old friend of Stoltenberg’s who has declared himself inhabil (having a potential conflict of interest in the matter), responded that he didn’t tell anyone that Stoltenberg had told him last October that he was interested in the job. Støre claims he responded that he would need to distance himself from the process.
Vedum claims he left the selection process up to the bureaucrats at the finance ministry, and distanced himself from it, too. Stoltenberg had been Vedum’s boss in the last left-center government before their parties both lost the election in 2013 and Stoltenberg went on to become secretary general of NATO in 2014.
Now Vedum and Støre will be getting more questions, as the probe into Stoltenberg’s hiring proceeds.