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Fresh revelations hit beleaguered president

Published: 15 Jan 2012 10:47 GMT+01:00

The newsweekly reports that during his time as premier of Lower Saxony, Wulff and his wife Bettina made a trip to Munich for the annual festival and that film producer David Groenewold paid for their upgrade to a better hotel room.

Groenewold is reported to have paid the difference between what Wulff paid for the room at the exclusive Bayerischer Hof hotel and what it actually cost.

Wulff’s lawyer insisted that his client had paid his own hotel bill, and this was then reimbursed by the state chancellery and Lower Saxony’s Christian Democratic Union, as he had a number of official and party appointments while in Munich.

Der Spiegel's website had previously reported that Groenewold had paid several thousand euros to the author of a book about Wulff that was published in 2006.

Wulff has been in the hot seat for over a month over his cosy relations with a number of business people after it emerged that he had accepted a low-interest loan of €500,000 from the wife of a friend, prominent business man Egon Geerkens, to purchase a house. At the time, he denied having any business relations with Geerkens, but declined to mention the loan.

Calls for his resignation increased after it was revealed that he had tried to stop mass circulation newspaper Bild from publishing the story.

During a recent TV interview, the president pledged to provide full details about the affair but his lawyer subsequently argued that he could not do so, saying only reporters can decide whether to release the questions and answers. However, amid mounting criticism, Wulff announced on Friday that his lawyer will make public more details next week.

On Saturday Chancellor Merkel once again backed Wulff, but also called on the president to provide transparency. "The task is to answer the questions extensively," she told reporters at a CDU conference.

The Local/DPA/smd

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

11:50 January 15, 2012 by JDee
errrrr.... so what? this non-story get more pathetic by the moment, what next, Christian Wulff accused of stealing cafe-creamers from DB train?
12:29 January 15, 2012 by supernova
This is Germania and Germans are born to condemn and criticize which is why their lives are so entertaining and full of fun. Wulff must hate these folks but of course deep in his heart!
13:17 January 15, 2012 by iseedaftpeople
The problem is that as President, he must be above any suspicions of bribery and compromised integrity. When somebody pays for his vacation, even if only in part, then that seriously calls into question Wulff's neutrality.

Government-employed officials of any kind in Germany are without exception forbidden from accepting any kinds of presents, favors, or other forms of remuneration from citizens or businesses in relation, however remote, with their official duties.

It seems to me that Wulff has already grossly violated that code of conduct many times. The revelations just keep on coming. Even as it is, he has already piled up enough evidence against himself that it just blows my mind how he can still not even blink and still vehemently refuses to step down.

Every day that he remains in office does more to tarnish and besmirch the office of the President.
14:34 January 15, 2012 by Englishted
What I find strange is the president of the host country needed to upgrade his room? ,didn't the hotel give him the best anyway ?.

But it is time for him to go corruption stinks and he is starting to whiff.
14:38 January 15, 2012 by raandy
JDee,LOL,good one.

The upgrade and the loan , not that big of an issue in many peoples mind, including myself.

As I have written before, it is the threat to the news that made me decide he should go.
18:25 January 15, 2012 by mixxim 1
He should try to learn from British politicians like Mendleson and Blair. Why catch minnows when they land Whales?
23:00 January 15, 2012 by McM
Pathetic provincial issues continue make German news so boring.

This country has always been run by petty corruption in some well tarted up media approved popular movement fad. Who are the the baying news hounds kidding. The President here is no better or worse than many of the past so called great squeaky clean examples of national symbolism from the various political parties. Denialism comes to mind each time the shock horror disclosure fog settles on some worthy sacrifice.

When will the general public here ever get tired media preoccupation with the fear of human nature alls iits imperfections.
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