Kert Kingo legal case concerns harassment against her, says EKRE leader

Mart Helme (EKRE) with Prime Minister Jüri Ratas (Centre) Monday.
Mart Helme (EKRE) with Prime Minister Jüri Ratas (Centre) Monday. Source: Siim Lõvi/ERR

A legal dispute involving Kert Kingo, a Conservative People's Party of Estonia (EKRE) MP who has been nominated new IT minister by the party, concerns workplace harassment, the party's leader told ERR Monday.

Kingo, a former Police and Border Guard Board (PPA) detective who also worked for the Estonian Tax and Customs Board (MTA), is a noted critic of anti-corruption activities carried out by the PPA and prosecutor's office.

Kingo was nominated earlier in the day, as a replacement for Marti Kuusik, who had to resign a day after taking office, at the end of April, following domestic violence allegations.

"This dispute [concerning Kert Kingo] is at the Supreme Court, and the judgment is likely to be handed down at the beginning of June,'' EKRE leader Mart Helme said on Monday.

''According to the information we have, the case was was about workplace harassment. She didn't agree to make a decision she had been required to make, which in her opinion was contrary to law," Helme continued, adding that it took some convincing to get Kingo to agree to put herself in the running for the ministerial post.

More details of the nature of the harassment endured by Kingo were not reported.

"She wasn't very eager, as she has settled in as member of the Riigikogu, and this was somewhat unexpected. But convincing her wasn't very difficult either. Her strongest asset is that in the present hysterical situation that Estonia finds itself in, she possesses as strong a nerve as the person standing in front of you [ie. Mart Helme]," he added.

Helme also said that a meeting has been scheduled with Prime Minister Jüri Ratas for Monday evening, on the matter, and expressed hope that the new minister will be appointed to the ministerial post this week.

Kert Kingo, who was elected to the Riigikogu for the first time at the March 3 election, said in an EKRE press release that she would focus on helping Estonian entrepreneurs reach foreign markets more effectively, if she took up the post. The post's official title is Minister of Foreign Trade and Information Technology.

Editor: Andrew Whyte

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