Sebastian Kurz back on the political scene: the former chancellor gave a guest appearance in the ÖVP’s investigative committee on Wednesday, speaking a lot and saying little. There were no new insights into Postenschacher and gas deals with Russia. Maybe he should testify again. It’s time to rethink committee conventions.
There he was again. In the spotlight. Sebastian Kurz danced on the political stage for about six hours. Interrogation in the ÖVP Corruption Commission of Inquiry. gaining knowledge? Equals zero. Point of order discussions and bickering instead. The former chancellor “likes to give information”, even though he has not been a politician for eight months, but he does work in the private sector, as he repeatedly emphasized.
Pact with Putin on gas dependence in 2040
He spoke a lot and for a long time – time flew by, if not in a flash. Topics: side letter about agreements; Pact with Putin on gas dependence in 2040 (OMV and Gazprom) in exchange for alleged deals by accomplices. “I’ve been in pictures of a lot of contracts that were signed without knowing the contracts.”
Entrance Benkos at the “Krone”
Real estate juggler René Benko, who is close to him, was also with Putin in Saint Petersburg. Kurz couldn’t remember a call from Benko about an “exchange” from the Treasury’s Winter Palace for the Postal Savings Bank. Another phone call caused a stir. According to chats, there was an alleged exchange between ex-Öbag boss Thomas Schmid and Kurz over Benko’s entry into the “Krone”. The question was whether the question was private. She was not admitted.
There have always been side letters, Kurz said. Kick-back payments to the ÖVP? All studies are “noise and smoke”.
The question of reforms becomes more urgent
Kurz is being investigated before the Ibiza Commission for false testimonies. “Two dozen witnesses gave only exculpatory evidence.”
On the other hand, Kurz is accused of embellishing studies that the Treasury Department funded to popularize him in the media. Ten people are being examined here. It is the presumption of innocence. The committee’s surveys raise the question of meaning.
Judge complains about tone in committee
Trial judge Wolfgang Pöschl complained in the “Krone” of the tone, in court it was more civilized. His predecessor, ex-supreme justice Ilse Huber, threw himself annoyed in the Ibiza committee. She is still shocked today. “I closed the chapter with horror.”
Pöschl wants more rights for the court in the first instance. And faster transmission of documents from the judiciary. Information persons are often accused so that they can refuse. Wolfgang Gerstl, ÖVP constitutional spokesman, wants a reform package. “We hope for a two-thirds majority. So far, only everyone agrees on live broadcasts.”