Stegö Chilò’s resignation statement in English

Cecilia Stegö Chilò today tendered her resignation to Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt.

Cecilia Stegö Chilò comments:

“By not paying my television licence fee and employing black market domestic help in the period before becoming minister, I have committed errors which are not acceptable, but which I have attempted to rectify as far as possible.

That ambition has now been stopped by the decisions of the licensing company Radiotjänst and the Swedish Transport Workers’ Union to report me to the police.

Since it will not be possible to rectify the situation within a reasonable period of time I no longer see any possibility of repairing the damage I have caused the government by means of hard, competent work.

Upon my appointment I expressed in several media that I accepted that I would be a Moderate culture minister in an Alliance government. This has not prevented many editors calling into question my loyalty and allowing people to speculate on my view of the task. I have been criticised for not explaining myself but today sees the presentation of a cultural budget that will pave the way for four years of reform in the cultural sphere.

Swedish culture needs renewal and Sweden needs a modern, self-confident cultural perspective. I wish my successor the best of luck with the work and I am of course very much saddened by having to leave a cultural department in development after such a short period. Getting to work with such a professional staff with issues I care deeply about was a privilege, however short-lived.

I also wish to extend my warm thanks to everybody who has supported me and my family in such a difficult period. I have experienced a lot of warmth, but also a lot of anxiety: what will happen with our democracy if it only has room for faultless people? It is a major and difficult question that I cannot discuss here. But I hope that my experiences will not scare off “people like me” – women, business people, journalists and independent public debaters – from developing their thoughts, following their convictions and getting involved in party politics.

Finally I would like to wish the new government the best of luck with the important job of renewing Sweden. I am truly sorry that I contributed to preventing a flying start to four years’ important work, which was well-deserved after all the hard work of the election campaign.”

Cecilia Stegö Chilò will not make any further comment on Monday due to today’s budget proposal.

Translation by The Local