The county governor in Hedmark steps down after alerts
The Centre Party member Dag Rønning (50) retires as county governor in Hedmark after alerts regarding inappropriate behaviour towards young girls. More details about Leirstein has also come to light.
– There are a handful of alerts and events. More than one and fewer than five, County Councilor, Aasa Gjestvang, (Centre Party) informed NTB on Friday.
The first alert came in 2015. The latest in 2018 and concerns an event that happened some time ago, Gjestvang says.
-In a case like this one, it can be somewhat difficult to distinguish between alerts and other events. An alert is a formal matter, but it is possible that we have received some notifications that are borderline. To be absolutely correct, I have chosen to say a handful of alerts and notifications, says Gjestvang.
Rønning delivered the application for being exempt from his office on Thursday.
– I have been confronted with reactions to my behaviour in social contexts where older and younger politicians have met. I am a social person who loves people, but has not been sufficiently aware of the boundaries of my role, writes Rønning in the application.
– I acknowledge that I have expressed bad judgment in some situations, and I am sorry and regretful, Rønning goes on.
Girls less than 20 years old
Hamar Arbeiderblad , who first reported the matter, finds that it concerns about girls below 18 years of age. Gjestvang will not comment on the newspaper’s information, but confirms to NTB that it concerns girls below the age of 20.
Guestvang will not elaborate on what inappropriate behaviour entails.
– It’s about disparity between younger and older. That’s really the only thing I can relay, Gjestvang says.
She does not want to comment on where the events have taken place.
– But it has happened when Dag Rønning has been present in his role as county mayor, says Gjestvang.
Wise to step down
– The outcome has come through a close dialogue between Rønning and those of us who have followed up on the notifications. That dialogue has been ongoing during the autumn of 2017 until yesterday, Gjestvang says.
The Centre Party Secretary-General, Knut M. Olsen, says that the case was reported to the county of Hedmark, and not to the Centre Party.
– We were informed about the matter in 2015 and were concerned that it was handled well at that time. My impression is that it was, says Olsen to Nationen.
– It was correct of Dag Rønning to step down because trust is necessary for a politician, says the Secretary General.
The county council in Hedmark will consider Rønning’s application at a meeting on January 15. A county governor will be elected at the same meeting, states the county council of Hedmark.
Leirstein sent SMS asking for sex with minor
NRK has provided details about text messages Ulf Leirstein (Progress Party) has sent to a woman where he has suggested sex with a 15 year old boy.
According to the channel, Leirstein has sent text messages to a female party colleague where he proposed sex involving a 15-year-old. The text messages were supposedly sent in 2012.
The Progress Party has not responded to NTB’s inquiries into the matter on Friday, nor has Leirstein.
To NRK he points to the regret he expressed on Wednesday when it became known that he had sent hard core pornographic pictures to youth members.
– Without commenting on all that is stated, I acknowledge that I have crossed the line, and that I am sorry, Leirstein wrote.
The Progress Party’s (Frp) parliamentary leader, Hans Andreas Limi, tells NRK that the organizing committee will assess the matter.
© NTB Scanpix / Norway Today