Sweden's would-be PM fights charges

ANNIKA SAVILL

Stockholm

Sweden's Social Democrats launched a strategy to save their prime minister- in-waiting yesterday. Mona Sahlin, defending herself against allegations of misuse of a government credit card, declared she would stay on as number two in the cabinet and would still run for the party leadership if "the party wants me to and if I want to".

Senior members of the party, reluctant to give up on the young and charismatic Ms Sahlin as Sweden's first woman prime minister, issued statements of support. Ms Sahlin then displayed all her media skills as she faced the press alone and denounced a tabloid campaign about her private finances. Asked if she would remain as Deputy Prime Minister, despite an investigation by public prosecutors, Ms Sahlin replied: "Of course. People are innocent until proven guilty."

Ms Sahlin, 38, who insists she paid back the government every krona each time she used the card, offered a passionate self-defence. "I may be careless with my life, but I'm sure as heck not careless with my politics ... and I'm sure as heck not dishonest. I fell behind on my finances in the 1980s. I did credit cards. I'm not alone in that."

She said she had been through campaigns against her before, "including faeces and condoms in the mail, and yet I have loved every second of my life in politics".

She said that to succeed Ingvar Carlsson, when he retires in March, "I would need a lot of support. To me that means a vast, vast majority of the party. But that is not enough - it also depends on what I want and what my family wants."

It also depends on prosecutors clearing her of any criminal offence. As legal opinions differ on the legality of borrowing on the government card, and other politicians may have been following the same practice, a clean bill for Ms Sahlin appears quite possible.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
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 General

Senior Digital Marketing Executive

£35000 - £45000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our client based i...

Junior Developer- CSS, HMTL, Bootstrap

competitive: Progressive Recruitment: A leading company within the healthcare ...

Junior Web Developer- CSS, HMTL

competitive: Progressive Recruitment: A leading company within the healthcare ...

Learning Support Assistant

£65 - £70 per day: Randstad Education Cardiff: Due to the continual growth and...

Day In a Page

Save the tiger: The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The animals bred for bones on China’s tiger farms

The big cats kept in captivity to perform for paying audiences and then, when dead, their bodies used to fortify wine
A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery all included in top 50 hidden spots in the UK

A former custard factory, a Midlands bog and a Leeds cemetery

Introducing the top 50 hidden spots in Britain
Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

Ebola epidemic: Plagued by fear

How a disease that has claimed fewer than 2,000 victims in its history has earned a place in the darkest corner of the public's imagination
Chris Pratt: From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

From 'Parks and Recreation' to 'Guardians of the Galaxy'

He was homeless in Hawaii when he got his big break. Now the comic actor Chris Pratt is Hollywood's new favourite action star
How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

How live cinema screenings can boost arts audiences

Broadcasting plays and exhibitions to cinemas is a sure-fire box office smash
Shipping container hotels: Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Pop-up hotels filling a niche

Spending the night in a shipping container doesn't sound appealing, but these mobile crash pads are popping up at the summer's biggest events
Native American headdresses are not fashion accessories

Feather dust-up

A Canadian festival has banned Native American headwear. Haven't we been here before?
Boris Johnson's war on diesel

Boris Johnson's war on diesel

11m cars here run on diesel. It's seen as a greener alternative to unleaded petrol. So why is London's mayor on a crusade against the black pump?
5 best waterproof cameras

Splash and flash: 5 best waterproof cameras

Don't let water stop you taking snaps with one of these machines that will take you from the sand to meters deep
Louis van Gaal interview: Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era

Louis van Gaal interview

Manchester United manager discusses tactics and rebuilding after the David Moyes era
Will Gore: The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series

Will Gore: Outside Edge

The goodwill shown by fans towards Alastair Cook will evaporate rapidly if India win the series
The children were playing in the street with toy guns. The air strikes were tragically real

The air strikes were tragically real

The children were playing in the street with toy guns
Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – The British, as others see us

Britain as others see us

Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite
How did our legends really begin?

How did our legends really begin?

Applying the theory of evolution to the world's many mythologies
Watch out: Lambrusco is back on the menu

Lambrusco is back on the menu

Naff Seventies corner-shop staple is this year's Aperol Spritz