“Jan Björklund quits 2016-10-06 as party leader of the Liberals,” read a notice on the Swedish parliament's website, prompting Swedish media to spring into action to report the politician's departure.
Screenshot of the message on the parliament's website.
The sudden news left many scratching their heads, not least Björklund himself.
“Somebody apparently wants me to resign. The reports in media are however false,” he tweeted.
Någon vill tydligen att jag ska avgå. Uppgifterna i media är dock felaktiga.
— Jan Björklund (@bjorklundjan) October 6, 2016
The Liberals' group leader in parliament, Christer Nylander, quickly hit out in a press release: “On the Riksdag's homepage this morning there was a completely false statement that Jan Björklund would resign.”
“It is very serious that the Riksdag's homepage publishes false information. We demand an explanation in full and an investigation into how this happened. A parliamentary website must be credible and accurate.”
The Secretariat of the Chamber, which administers work in the Riksdag, said that the error had been due to a computer glitch. Its IT system requires all members of parliament to have a start and end date. The end date is usually adjusted before it goes live on the parliament's homepage via the site's calendar function.
However, in the case of Björklund, this had not happened. The Riksdag's website also wrongly suggested on Thursday that Centre Party leader Annie Lööf was set to resign on October 19th.