The VPRO starts its own investigation into the documentary the broadcaster made about Sigrid Kaag. The editorial office writes that in a statement, which was drafted because D66 and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs tried to influence the final assembly.
According to the broadcaster, those attempts were unsuccessful and the film became as the director intended, says in the statement. However, the broadcaster attracts certain criticism to “learn lessons for the future”.
After a first viewing of the documentary, the team around Kaag had all kinds of wishes and suggestions. For example, it was insisted that images in which Kaag does not wear a belt in the back of her service car should be removed from the documentary, or with computer effects to make it look like she was wearing a belt. The VPRO did not respond to that wish, but did examine whether it was technically possible to manipulate the images.
“The shopping of seat belts isnt good. Thats just a mistake: stupid, dont,” says VPro editor Stan van Engelen in Nieuwsuur. But communication with Kaags guardians should have been better. “The tone is too informal. We have to do something about that too.” Van Engelen also advocates clear appointments in advance. “There is a need for more framework. Maybe even a protocol.”
In this case, too, should have been highlighted in advance what Kaag and her team could comment on when watching the film beforehand, the broadcaster says.
Champagne in Niger
That is why the broadcaster is going to “keep an eye on the process of making this documentary internally” in the short term. The case came to the role after GeenStijl published internal documents that a reader had requested by relying on the Public Administration Act (WOB).
However, the creators have made several adjustments on request, such as removing shots of ready glasses of champagne during a visit by Kaag in Niger and a comment from her about party companion Rob Jetten and other MPs.
Its not the only investigation of the issue. The NPO Ombudsman will also look at the issue, and the Media Commissariat is considering it. Minister Slob (Media) asked the VPRO for clarification. In response to earlier Parliamentary Questions from the PVV, he answered that D66 had no substantive interference with the documentary.
Kaag also responded to the fuss himself: