• Germany's news in English

Berlin minister resigns after 11 days in office

The Local · 12 Dec 2011, 15:51

Published: 12 Dec 2011 15:51 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Braun, a member of the conservative Christian Democratic Union (CDU), came under fire from consumer protection lawyers as soon as he was sworn in on December 1. They accused him of certifying property deals during his work as notary even though he knew that the properties were of sub-standard quality.

More and more accusations from buyers who used Braun’s services were made public over the weekend, putting the Berlin CDU under considerable pressure, particularly because it was a banking scandal involving property deals that brought down the CDU the last time it was part of the Berlin city government in 2001.

"It is the correct decision," said Klaus Wowereit, Berlin's Social Democratic (SPD) mayor, on Monday. "We imagined our (coalition's) start differently."

The opposition was quick to make the connection. “It gives the impression that the SPD-CDU is picking up where it left off in the 1990s, when they mixed politics with the real estate business,” said Ramona Pop, Green party faction leader in the Tagesspiegel newspaper.

Braun received support from CDU party leader Frank Henkel on Monday morning, who initially tried to keep him in the post of justice minister while dropping him from the role of consumer affairs minister. Apparently, though, the political damage was deemed too great.

“The members of the CDU executive committee have offered Braun their full support,” Henkel said. “The numerous arguments from Michael Braun were unfortunately never recognized publicly. Nevertheless, Braun has told us he will be asking Berlin’s Mayor Klaus Wowereit to accept his resignation because of the one-sided reporting – for the good of the city and to avert damage to his office.”

As a notary, Braun is thought to have processed more than 700 property deals between June 2010 and November 2011. Several of his former clients have complained that he did not adequately assess the properties, and they were consequently ripped off by the sellers.

Story continues below…

The Local/DPA/bk

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

09:38 December 13, 2011 by danclarkie
"putting the Berlin CDU came under considerable pressure"

Do not understand.
12:17 December 13, 2011 by freechoice
conspiracy to sway votes away from CDU?

even though German's economy is growing like nobody business?
Today's headlines
Student fined for spying on women via their webcams
Photo: DPA

Student from Munich fined €1,000 for spying on 32 different computers, using their webcams to take photographs, or record their keyboard history.

This is how much startup geeks earn in Germany
Photo: DPA

A comprehensive new survey of 143 startup founders shows how much you are likely to be earning at a German startup, from entry level all the way up to sitting on the board.

Man dies after beating for peeing near Freiburg church
The Johannes Church in Freiburg. Photo Jörgens Mi/Wikipedia

A middle-aged man from southern Germany has died after being attacked by a group of men who took umbrage with the fact he was urinating in the vicinity of a church.

The Local List
Seven German celebrities with uncanny doppelgängers
Former Berlin mayor Klaus Wowereit and actor Alec Baldwin. Photo: DPA; Gage Skidmore, Wikimedia Commons

Check out these seven look-a-likes of well known German figures - we admit that some are more tenuous than others...

Israel seeks to buy three new German submarines: report
A Dolphin class submarine. Photo: DPA

Israel is seeking to buy three more advanced submarines from Germany at a combined price of €1.2 billion, an Israeli newspaper reported Friday.

Here’s where people live the longest in Germany
Photo: DPA

Germans down south seem to know the secret to a long life.

More Germans identify as LGBT than in rest of Europe
Photo: DPA

The percentage of the German population which identifies as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender is higher than anywhere else in Europe, according to a new study.

'Reichsbürger' pair attack police in Saxony-Anhalt
File photo: DPA.

A "Reichsbürger" and his wife attacked police officers on Thursday, just a day after another Reichsbürger fatally shot an officer in Bavaria.

Five things not to miss at the Frankfurt Book Fair
Photo: DPA

From consulting a book doctor to immersing yourself in an author's world with the help of virtual reality, here are five things not to miss at this week's Frankfurt Book Fair, the world's largest publishing event.

Parents who don't get nursery spot for kid entitled to pay
Photo: DPA

The Federal Court of Justice (BGH) ruled on Thursday that parents whose children don't receive placements in nursery care are entitled to compensation.

Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
10 things you never knew about socialist East Germany
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
How Germans fell in love with America's favourite squash
How I ditched London for Berlin and became a published author
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
12 clever German idioms that'll make you sound like a pro
23 fascinating facts you never knew about Berlin
9 unmissable events to check out in Germany this October
10 things you never knew about German reunification
10 things you're sure to notice after an Oktoberfest visit
Germany's 10 most Instagram-able places
15 pics that prove Germany is absolutely enchanting in autumn
10 German films you have to watch before you die
6 things about Munich that’ll stay with you forever
10 pieces of German slang you'll never learn in class
Ouch! Naked swimmer hospitalized after angler hooks his penis
Six reasons why Berlin is now known as 'the failed city'
15 tell-tale signs you’ll never quite master German
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
Eleven famous Germans with surnames that'll make your sides split
The best ways to get a visa as an American in Germany
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd