Bishop Asked PM For More Money At The PM's Request
As reported by RÚV on Saturday, Prime Minister Sigmundur Davíð Gunnlaugsson has explained that a letter which the Bishop of the Icelandic State Church addressed to the Prime Minister, to ask for a budget increase, was written at his, that is the Prime Minister’s, request.
Without further citing his sources, Sigmundur explained to RÚV that he had “become aware that the Church found its budget somewhat lacking”.
On Monday, Nútíminn.is then revealed that the Prime Minister’s economic advisor, Dr. Sigurður Hannesson, is the Bishop’s son.
According to Nútíminn’s report, Sigmundur Davíð and Sigurður have been close friends since they met during their doctoral studies at Oxford. Sigurður finished his thesis, in mathematics. He has been employed as a managing director at MP Banki since 2013.
One of Sigurður’s assignments is chairing the governmental committee on “debt correction”, established to organise and implement the homeowners’ debt relief package which was the cornerstone of the Progressive Party’s last 2013 election campaign.
Sigmundur Davíð further explained his intention to increase the Church’ budget by saying that it had contributed to the construction of the country’s economy, for which the religious institute should be thanked, and the fruits of which it should enjoy.