Former Prime Minister and former chairman of the Independence Party Geir H. Haarde said in his address at the party’s national convention on Sunday that his predecessor Davíd Oddsson’s criticism of the party’s reconstruction committee had been unwarranted.
Former Prime Minister of Iceland Geir H. Haarde. Copyright: Icelandic Photo Agency.
In his surprise speech the previous day, Oddsson, who is also a former governor of the Central Bank of Iceland, declared the committee’s self-critical report not worth the paper it was printed on, saying he lamented the beautiful trees that had been cut down to process it.
Oddsson stated the report was badly written and that it included many inaccuracies, Morgunbladid reports.
Then Oddsson cast doubt on committee chairman Vilhjálmur Egilsson’s credibility by claiming that former CEO of Kaupthing Bank Hreidar Már Sigurdsson, former CEO of Baugur Group Jón Ásgeir Jóhannesson and former CEO of FL Group Hannes Smárason had appointed him to run the Confederation of Icelandic Employers (SA).
At that point, many attendees of the national convention walked out.
“I think these comments are generally unwarranted, not just concerning myself, but also concerning the 80 individuals who participated in the task force and helped write this report,” Egilsson said in reaction to Oddsson’s words.
Haarde also came to the defense of Egilsson and the reconstruction committee, complimenting him on his work and recommending that other members of the Independence Party support his proposals.
However, when the content of the report was first made public, Haarde was not pleased, saying the party should rather look towards the future than into the past.