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Wulff apologises for personal finance faux pas

The Local · 22 Dec 2011, 16:02

Published: 22 Dec 2011 15:05 GMT+01:00
Updated: 22 Dec 2011 16:02 GMT+01:00

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"It wasn't forthright and I'm sorry about it," Wulff said in a televised address from his official residence in Berlin. "I have the need to address this matter. It's about trust in me and my office."

Wulff reiterated his earlier statement that he should have revealed more to the Lower Saxony parliament about the extent of his financial relationship with a businessman. Last week, it emerged that he had taken a €500,000 loan in 2008 from the wife of businessman Egon Geerkens while state premier yet failing to tell the parliament about it.

"I realise how this might be perceived," he said.

But he denied that business relationships had influenced him during his term as Lower Saxon premier between 2003 and 2010 or as president, the largely ceremonial post he's had since last year.

"I say clearly: I never afforded anyone preferential treatment with my public office," Wulff said. "I ask for the continuing trust of citizens."

Anger intensified this week when it emerged that another businessman Carsten Maschmeyer paid to promote a book by the Christian Democrat Wulff in 2008 while running for re-election in Lower Saxony. Maschmeyer has denied that Wulff may have known of his involvement.

Chancellor Angela Merkel has so far pledged her complete support to the president. But some German politicians have already begun calls for him to resign.

Though there have been suggestions that Wulff broke the law in his business dealings, prosecutors said Thursday that there was no proof of criminal wrongdoing.

Story continues below…

The president's former spokesman Olaf Glaeseker has been replaced by a deputy for the time being, according to the president's office.

The Local/DPA/DAPD/mdm

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

09:00 January 6, 2012 by AndrewHWallace
actions that should be praised, but sometimes very difficult to re-trusted by someone who has been in disappoint. Personal finance should be more priority to people who are in low level to improve their welfare, at least can help them provide a loan to pay for Cheap insurance with no interest.
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