The Schlesinger era in public broadcasting is coming to an end: After retiring from ARD and RBB, the 61-year-old also lost her position at an ARD film subsidiary. The reason is the suspicion of nepotism, which has not yet been clarified. And new allegations are emerging.
After her resignation from the ARD and RBB leadership, there are also consequences for Patricia Schlesinger in the supervisory board of the ARD film subsidiary Degeto. Degeto Film GmbH, based in Frankfurt am Main, announced: "The acting director of RBB Hagen Brandstätter has dismissed Ms. Schlesinger as a member of the Degeto supervisory board."
Brandstäter, who took over the business at the head of the public broadcaster Rundfunk Berlin-Brandenburg (RBB) after resigning a week ago, had previously said in the RBB "media magazine" on Saturday that he had signed a letter on Friday that this cannot be maintained any longer. Schlesinger was previously the head of the supervisory board. Degeto is an ARD community facility that is responsible for fictional series and feature films, for example.
The 61-year-old has been facing increasing allegations of nepotism for weeks. The public prosecutor's office is investigating against her, her husband and ex-"Spiegel" journalist Gerhard Spörl and against the resigned RBB chief controller Wolf-Dieter Wolf on suspicion of infidelity and accepting advantages. An external investigation by a law firm is also underway, but the results are not yet available. The Broadcasting Council of the public broadcaster will meet in Berlin on Monday to discuss Schlesinger's contract termination.
Meanwhile, further allegations against Schlesinger became known. The online medium "Business Insider", which got the whole case rolling at the end of June, reported on Saturday that there had been preliminary talks before committee meetings, for which no minutes were said to have been kept. In addition, there should be confidential special reports in addition to the station's annual reports, and Schlesinger's entire salary should also be listed in a paper. So far, the amount of bonus payments for the management team has been kept under lock and key by the broadcaster.
The case plunged the RBB into a deep crisis, which also rubbed off on the reputation of the entire public broadcaster in Germany. ARD boss and WDR director Tom Buhrow had announced that ARD wants to work to strengthen the supervision of all broadcasters. "We check whether the offices of the supervisory authority are adequately equipped everywhere in the ARD." Buhrow took over the ARD business after Schlesinger's resignation.