AfD Berlin: Party conference to be rescheduled at the end of January 2020
The departure of Alexander Bertram puts country head Pazderski under even greater pressure. The state party convention, which has been postponed several times, is now to take place in January.
The next bad news for the Berlin AfD was given personally by its regional head Georg Pazderski last Tuesday morning from his private email address: Pazderski informed the state and district boards about the impending departure of regional manager Alexander Bertram.
In the past few weeks, he was probably primarily concerned with the ultimately unsuccessful search for a room for the state party convention, which recently had to be postponed for the second time. Bertram is now giving up his post at the end of November.
Without going into more detail about the reasons for this decision, Pazderski said that it was "very easy to understand". He thanked Bertram for his commitment and said that he would "leave very large shoes for his successor". No word on who it could be.
The departure of Bertram, who is always loyal, puts pressure on Pazderski even more than before. Insiders therefore describe the departure as "serious". Bertram is also chairman of the AfD group in the district assembly of Treptow-Köpenick.
Most recently, the resignation of the regional arbitration court in May and the cancellation of two state party rallies in Pazderski had been hard. The state board he headed has only been in office since the end of his maximum term of two years on Monday.
As of January 1, as confirmed by an internal letter from the state judiciary Michael Adam, "there is no longer a capable state board". For this reason, the members of the State Arbitration Court, who are provisionally appointed by the party's Federal Arbitration Court, must appoint an emergency board. Pazderski is likely to belong to this.
On January 25th and 26th, peace should finally return to the national association. Then the state party conference should be rescheduled and the state arbitration court and the state board newly elected. However, only if the landlord of the location planned for the state party convention does not jump off again.
Pazderski wants to run again for the state board - just like nine other current members. Only Sarah-Emanuela Gröber, assessor of the committee, has decided against renewed candidacy. This in turn is attributed to the Bundestag MP Gottfried Curio, known by many as the "darling of the grassroots". There is also talk of plans for a double leadership on the board of the Berlin AfD.
It is unclear how the problems at the head of the regional association affect the grassroots. While individual members speak of it simmering at every nook and corner, others deny “larger internal party turmoil”. The board of directors around Pazderski answered the questions of the members at the regular regulars' table. The cancellation of the state party convention, which had been officially declared a few days earlier, was the determining topic there, but did not lead to an open argument.
Instead, the rumor that was waving through its own ranks that the state party convention had been deliberately postponed was "convincingly weakened," reports one participant. Already in the summer, individual members had expressed suspicion that Pazderski, who feared his re-election, would vigorously postpone the state party convention behind the date of the federal party convention so as not to jeopardize his chances of being re-elected to the federal executive board.
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It could be heard from several sources that for this reason existing space offers from party circles - among others by members of the Brandenburg AfD state association - were only reluctantly examined and ultimately declared unsuitable. At a press conference called specifically for this topic, Pazderski, on the other hand, had described such rumors as "ridiculous". His deputies Beatrix von Storch and Jeannette Auricht made similar comments, who will also run for election again in January.
On the other hand, a dispute seems to have been cleared that had been a problem for the Pankower AfD district association in the past few months. In a joint statement by Götz Frömming and the district board headed by Michael Adam, Frömming's “conflict about the district affiliation based on different interpretations of the statutes” is declared “mutually ended” by both sides. Frömming was recently elected one of the three parliamentary directors of the AfD parliamentary group in the Bundestag.
Previously, Frömming, who had moved from Pankow to Mitte in 2014, was prevented from returning to his old district association. Reportedly, it was about posts and mandates. After the dispute escalated again at the beginning of October and Fromming, like Adam, assumed that there was slander and the spreading of falsehoods, Frömming prevailed.
Earlier, AfD federal manager Hans-Holger Malcomeß intervened in the dispute and clarified that the member of the Bundestag living in Pankow must be allowed to belong to the local district association if he wanted to.