Denmark’s Immigration Minister Inger Støjberg should face a parliamentary hearing over her attempts to prevent funding being awarded to a social project, according to the country’s Alternative party.
Josephine Fock, a spokesperson for Displaced People and New Danes with the Alternative party, said the minister should explain the decision to pull funding awarded to the Exitcirklen scheme.
“I have requested a hearing in order to get an explanation of what exactly went on,” said Fock.
As reported by The Local, a hearing over the issue would be the fourth for Støjberg this year. She has already addressed parliament three times over a disputed illegal directive to forcibly separate asylum couples.
This time, the controversy involves funds designated by parliament for organisations helping women in situations of social control, for which Exitcirklen applied and was awarded in accordance with the rules.
According to the local news agency Ritzau, Støjberg attempted to close the fund, thereby preventing the money from reaching Exitcirklen. Støjberg had argued that its closure is justified since only one application was received.
“It is completely unacceptable that the minister intervened in this issue. Exitcirklen was approved to receive support because it is a qualified project and lives up to what the funding is designated to achieve,” Fock said.
According to The Local, the Exitcirklen issue received considerable attention in Denmark after conservative politicians including the Conservative Party’s Naser Khader, Martin Henriksen of the Danish People’s Party, and the Liberal (Venstre) party’s Marcus Knuth stated their objections to individuals behind the project.
They attempted to prevent the awarding of the funds by writing letters to parliamentary spokespersons with parties that supported the fund, raising their objections to the individuals behind Exitcirklen based on their motives and trustworthiness.
In the end, Exitcirklen’s funding was approved after the Alternative, Social Liberal (Radikale Venstre) and Socialist People’s parties declined to support the call to pull it.
According to Fock, Støjberg’s attempt to prevent the funds being awarded on the basis of these objections is a potential breach of the law.
“It makes this issue even more awful if that’s the reason, and the original explanation was just an excuse… then we are talking about abuse of position and abuse of power by both Martin Henriksen and the minister,” Fock was quoted as saying by The Local.
“I have therefore requested the secretariat call the minister to a hearing,” she added.