Fraud accusation arises on Aaviksoo's TUT appointment

Tallinn University of Technology (TUT) (Edmond Mäll/TUT)
6/5/2015 10:50 PM
Category: Education

Four Tallinn University of Technology (TUT) committee members, part of a 11-strong council which elected Jaak Aaviksoo as rector, said on Tuesday that they did not vote for the former government minister, meaning that at least one of the eight votes Aaviksoo received, could have been forged.

Aaviksoo needed eight votes to be named rector, and now four of the 11 members denied voting for him on May 22. The ballots, done in secret, will now be analyzed at the Estonian Forensic Science Institute.

Sandor Liive, the head of the committee, said DNA, fingerprint and handwriting analysis will be conducted on the ballots.

In another twist to the story, Liive said on Friday afternoon that one of the four is yet to officially ask for a forensic test, although that person agreed to Tuesday's protest letter, saying four members voted against Aaviksoo. Liive said if that official request does not arrive he will ask for a letter of resignation from that committee member.

The four members, Heiti Hääl, Rainer Kattel, Margus Lopp and Mart Saarna, have asked for a new vote.

If it turns out all four did vote against, and the vote is annulled, the committee will be dissolved. If tests do not prove the four members' claims, no new vote will be organized and Aaviksoo will be named rector on June 22, if a university council does not use a veto option against him.

J.M. Laats

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