After the allegations in the state broadcasting center in Kiel, the NDR announced personnel consequences. After an internal investigation by the NDR was presented on Tuesdaywho identified a “disturbed editorial climate” as a major problem, especially in the television sector, says the state radio station director Volker Thormählen: “I would like to thank Norbert Lorentzen and Julia Stein for their excellent journalistic work. Because of the loss of trust, I informed both of them this morning that I will no longer be working with them.”
Thormählen and the management are making sure that both are given new tasks outside of the Schleswig-Holstein state radio station. Lorentzen, editor-in-chief and previously head of television at the broadcasting station, and Stein, who was head of the political editorial department, had to allegations of political interference asked a few weeks ago to be released from their duties until further notice. Shortly thereafter, the director of the state radio station, Thormählen, also went on unpaid leave. NDR director Joachim Knuth has now asked Volker Thormählen to resume his work as director, according to NDR. Thormählen should outline how he intends to get the problems identified in some areas of the state broadcasting center under control.
According to Thormählen, a culture prevailed that was not compatible with his principles
The internal audit presented yesterday, which director Knuth commissioned two senior NDR editors to do, found no political influence in the state broadcasting station. However, she came to the conclusion that there were major problems in working together in the television department of the Landesfunkhaus, which also had an impact on journalistic work.
“Today I know – there was a culture in parts that is not acceptable, that is not compatible with my principles and that I should have taken action against earlier,” says Volker Thormählen. “Our jobs are demanding, they bring enough pressure with them anyway – time pressure in the current situation, but above all quality pressure. There shouldn’t be any more pressure or even fear.”
According to NDR, a “structural and cultural new beginning” in the Schleswig-Holstein broadcasting center should begin immediately, and the first rounds of talks would start tomorrow. The test report by the NDR in Kiel is independent of an external investigation that the Schleswig-Holstein State Broadcasting Council has commissioned.