DR blocking access to key documents

The Danish national broadcaster DR is faced with increasing political pressure for refusing to release documents which are related to financial profligacy for organising this year’s Eurovision Song Contest.

The total sum for the 2014 Eurovision spectacle, which included the conversion of B&W Hallerne ‒ a former ship-building hangar ‒ added up to 112 million Danish kroner (15 million euros), which is more than triple of the initially planned 34.6 million Danish kroner (4.6 million euros). In addition to this, DR spent over 190 million Danish kroner (25.5 million euros) just on the production of the event.

The Danish National Audit Office is trying to investigate this case, however, the publicly-funded broadcaster is doing everything it possibly can to obstruct providing access to key documents. The national broadcaster has once again rejected requests to offer these documents to the National Audit Office by defending its decision referring to the paragraph of the Danish radio and television law that reads “cases and documents relating to DR’s programme service and business related conditions … are exempt from the law on public administration”.

A number of representatives from various political parties are planning to present the matter to the Danish minister of culture, Marriane Jevled, in hopes that she can put more pressure for DR to release the documents.

However, it is not just the national broadcaster that is being blamed for the excessive spending related to hosting the Eurovision Song Contest in Copenhagen past May. An investigation against Copenhagen’s Mayor Frank Jensen has also been launched, who was allegedly aware of the imprudent spending figures months before the Song Contest, but did not forward this information on to key officials.

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