Prime Minister’s Office sought to head off investigation

Anonymous letter was intended as a form of silent pressure, auditors say

Officials in the Prime Minister’s Office attempted to pressure state auditors into not investigating potential wrongdoing in connection with solar power legislation that wound up costing the state three billion kroner in unwarranted subsidies.

Documents obtained by Jyllands-Posten newspaper indicate that an unsigned letter was sent from the Prime Minister’s Office to Lone Strøm, the lead Rigsrevision auditor, in September, asking her not to investigate the internal discussions leading up to the legislation being written. 

The letter concludes by proposing a meeting with Rigsrevision officials in order to discuss how “the investigation into state solar power subsides can proceed in the least obtrusive manner”. 

According to Rigsrevisionen, the meeting never took place. 

SEE RELATED: Reprimand on the way to four top ministers in solar panel saga 

Parliament’s own auditors pointed out that they are the only ones who can instruct Rigsrevisionen on how to carry out its investigations and called it “ugly” that the letter had been sent unsigned. 

“That’s an effort to put pressure on someone without making it official,” Peder Larsen (SF), an MP and auditor, said.

Similar letters were later sent to Mogens Lykketoft (S), the speaker of parliament and the head of parliament’s auditors. The letter was signed, but the four cabinet members who sent it are expected to receive a reprimand for seeking to sway the auditor’s decision.

Rigsrevisionen’s investigation resulted in an official reprimand to the climate minister, Martin Lidegaard (R).