GREEK MEDIA CLAIM EBU’S MEMBER VOTING PROBE
ATHENS, GREECE – It’s a storm that plundered Greek media all over since this afternoon. One of the most well sourced newspapers on TV information, Paron Newspaper, re-posted by major blogs on Greece and Cyprus (i.e. ShowTime) published a post and claiming that current EBU’s Event Supervisor Sietse Bakker (without naming him) was part of an ERT vote rigging during the Greek National Finals of 2005 and 2006. Star Channel immediately brought the story as breaking news mentioning that the person who was implied was… Dutch and was former chief editor of major Eurovision fan site.
Here is what Paron Newspaper says: “…Logistic check on former ERT (Greek national broadcaster) showed that there were some weird expenses during the Greek national finals of 2005 and 2006 as the broadcaster invited and paid chief editor of a Eurovision fan site to participate in the jury. . The people doing the logistic search asked what this spending was all about and they got the answer that this was a typical behaviour of ERT to invite and cover the cost that specific jury member from aboard in exchange for his vote to specific songs in the Greek national final, supporting this way the “Greek strategy” in Eurovision. Today this person is high profiled member of EBU, advising Mr Jon Ola Sand and dealing with corruption and vote probing issues in Eurovision Song Contest. This person was also pro-Greek in the issue of remaining the country as participating member of Eurovision Song Contest.”
Mr Bakker immediately contacted by oikotimes.com and he was kind to answer this weird and unprecedented post: “In 2005, and 2006, before I joined the EBU, I was invited to be a member of the Greek national selection jury. ERT covered flight and hotel expenses, as usual when foreign guests appear on a national selection jury. I judged the songs objectively and any other suggestion is fiction.”