Barbara Bertelsen “ineligible” to particpate in appointment of new head of Danish employment agency

The PM has declared that Bertelsen has a conflict of interest.

Barbara Bertelsen has been barred from participating in the appointment of a new Medarbejder- og Kompetencestyrelsen director over concerns of a conflict of interest.

PM Mette Frederiksen said in a statement to TV2 that Bertelsen is “ineligible” to provide input on the hiring process because she herself is being investigated by Medarbejder- og Kompetencestyrelsen in connection with the Mink Case.

“We have a head of department who is deeply involved in a process that she is the subject of – And it does not work,” said Transparency International’s Jesper Olsen to Berlingske.

The PM’s Department and the PM’s staff are also being kept out of the appointment process.

Instability for Bertelsen
Prior to her decision to exclude Bertelsen from participating in the Medarbejder- og Kompetencestyrelsen matter, the PM received harsh criticism for allowing Bertelsen to carry out her traditional advisory role.

“Officials, like everyone else, are equal before the law, and therefore no one should have either better or worse treatment, because they are Mette Frederiksen’s close collaborators, and because the Prime Minister is not able to acknowledge her own mistakes and responsibility for breaking the law and grossly misleading the population and the Folketing,” said Sophie Løhde from Venstre.

The Mink Commission found that there is a basis for Bertelsen to be held legally accountable for her role in the illegally ordered culling of all Danish mink in late 2020, hence the trouble she is in now.

In addition to Bertelsen, Medarbejder- og Kompetencestyrelsen is looking into nine other officials following the Mink Commission’s report.