Former mayor of Kópavogur Gunnar Birgisson will be back on city council, albeit temporarily, to take part in a city council meeting this Tuesday.
Birgisson was stepped down as mayor last year when investigations began regarding alleged sweetheart deals Kópavogur was awarding a company owned by Birgisson’s daughter. He then left the council altogether when investigations broadened to included his and other councilpersons’ activities within the city pension fund.
Undeterred, Birgisson maintained his innocence and vowed to run for mayor again, which he did. However, he finished in third place in the Independence party’s primaries. While his past controversies may have had some influence, there was also an anonymous mass-mailed letter sent to members of the sports club HK during primary season, urging them all to vote for Ármann Kr. Ólafsson – Birgisson’s challenger and also a member of the same party – regardless of party affiliation.
In the end, Ólafsson did win, and Birgisson cried foul; that political enemies were behind the result. Nonetheless, so long as the Independence Party wins at least three seats on Kópavogur city council – and Birgisson avoids jail – he can expect to be on city council again.