Francois Hollande 'affair' latest: French first lady Valerie Trierweiler demands official statement and 'rapid clarification' of her status as hospital stay extended

The President’s official companion has told a French journalist that she is aware that some sort of official statement needs to be made

Paris

The French First Lady Valérie Trierweiler has demanded a “rapid clarification” of her status – both romantic and public – following President François Hollande's reported love affair with a 41-year-old actress.

The President's official companion has told a French journalist that she believes that an official statement needs to be made to the French people despite Mr Hollande's insistence that the episode is merely part of his “private life”.

François Hollande And Julie Gayet’s ‘Love Affair Flat’ Linked To Corsican Mafia

Ms Trierweiler, 49, was still in hospital suffering from depression and shock tonight, three days after Closer magazine revealed that Mr Hollande was having an affair with the actress Julie Gayet. Her office announced that doctors judged that she needed more rest and she would not leave the hospital as originally planned today.

“She needs to recover after the shock she received,” her office said. “She needs quiet.”

The only journalist to have spoken to her since the revelation of President Hollande's nocturnal, scooter-borne escapades said that Ms Trierweiler  had been prescribed a “ten day rest cure”.

Frédéric Gerschel of Le Parisien spoke to Ms Trierweiler by telephone on Sunday afternoon. He told RTL radio: “She knows that a clarification (of her status) is needed. She knows that, if she is no longer First Lady, she cannot continue to have an office (in the Elysée Palace) and make use of state funds. She knows that transparency is needed.”

Since Ms Trierweiler is not married to Mr Hollande her semi-official position  as “Première Dame” depends entirely on her status as his romantic partner or official companion. Paradoxically, it would be easier for President Hollande to insist that this love affair with Ms Gayet  was entirely “private” if he was married to his First Lady.

As things stand, he is coming under increasing pressure from the French media and from opposition politicians to make Ms Trierweiler's position clear. Some reports suggest that a statement will be made – either reaffirming Mr Hollande's commitment to Ms Trierweiler or  ending their relationship – before the President gives a much-awaited press conference on a shift in his economic policy on Tuesday afternoon.

Ms Trierweiler seems to be ready to forgive and forget. A friend – quite possibly the First Lady herself – told Le Parisien: “She doesn't want to slam the door in rage but she wants to know very quickly what François Hollande's intentions are.”

It was Mr Hollande himself who broke the news of the story to Ms Trierweiller last Thursday, the day before Closer published pictures showing the President, disguised by a motorcycle helmet, emerging from the actress' s pied-a-terre  close to the Elysée Palace.

“Valerie was hit on the belly by a high speed train,” the friend told Le Parisien. “She was completely knocked out.”

Although Ms Trierweiller had heard rumours of a presidential love affair, she had chosen to discount them, the newspaper said.

The unfolding crisis is being watched with intense schadenfreude by Mr Hollande's predecessor. During his successful election campaign in 2012, Mr Hollande criticised the way that Nicolas Sarkozy's eventful private life had dominated his five years in the Elysée Palace. He promised to be a sober, irreproachable, hard-working president.

One of Mr Sarkozy's closest friends, the former interior minister, Brice Hortefex – often used as a messenger for the former President's views – said: “Sarkozy has no reason to cry because Hollande is getting himself in trouble.”

He recalled that in the final presidential TV debate in May 2012 Mr Hollande had made a string of anti-Sarkozy statements in the form of pledges  beginning with the words. “Moi, President” or “When I am President”.

One of the Hollande pledges was:  “When I am President, I will ensure that my behaviour is exemplary every instant.”

A second scandal surrounding the ownership of the flat where Mr Hollande and Ms Gayet spent the night of 30-31 December appeared to have been nipped in the bud today. French websites had wrongly reported that the flat – in the Rue du Cirque (circus street), 100 metres from the Elysee – belonged to a man who allegedly had links with the Corsican mafia.

The real owner, Jean-Pierre Discazeaux, a 71-year-old retired businessman living in Biarritz, said that he would sue if the allegations were repeated.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
PROMOTED VIDEO
ebooks
ebooksA year of political gossip, levity and intrigue from the sharpest pen in Westminster
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

Recruitment Genius: HR Manager

£25000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They are in need of a HR Manage...

h2 Recruit Ltd: Business Development Manager - HR Consultancy - £65,000 OTE

£35000 - £40000 per annum + £65,000 OTE: h2 Recruit Ltd: London, Birmingham, M...

Day In a Page

Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all
The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

The week Hollywood got scared and had to grow up a bit

Sony suffered a chorus of disapproval after it withdrew 'The Interview', but it's not too late for it to take a stand, says Joan Smith
From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?

Panto dames: before and after

From Widow Twankey to Mother Goose, how do the men who play panto dames get themselves ready for the performance of a lifetime?
Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Thirties murder mystery novel is surprise runaway Christmas hit

Booksellers say readers are turning away from dark modern thrillers and back to the golden age of crime writing
Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best,' says founder of JustGiving

Anne-Marie Huby: 'Charities deserve the best'

Ten million of us have used the JustGiving website to donate to good causes. Its co-founder says that being dynamic is as important as being kind
The botanist who hunts for giant trees at Kew Gardens

The man who hunts giants

A Kew Gardens botanist has found 25 new large tree species - and he's sure there are more out there