University Post
University of Copenhagen
Independent of management


Faculty of Health Sciences: No press, please

Head of Communications pointed to »concerns among staff«, as he stopped journalists from following the early morning search of Milena Penkowa's former office

Freedom of the press and the public interest. Two good reasons to grant access to journalists, including one from the University Post and the Danish section Universitetsavisen, this early morning Friday at the Faculty of Health Sciences as Milena Penkowa’s former offices were searched for evidence by her, her lawyer, and four members of the police fraud squad.

But freedom of the press and the public interest were not enough for Morten Janstrup, Head of Communications at the Faculty of Health Sciences.

»There is one consideration that weighs more in this balance,« he explained to us, and to three journalists from the daily Jyllands-Posten, in the foyer the Panum building: »This is the consideration for our staff. It creates an atmosphere of uncertainty among staff to allow you indoors,« he said.

Wait for report

300 staff work at the Faculty of Health Sciences. Neither Milena Penkowa nor her lawyer had concerns about press access to the building.

»As the search will take place on University property, I have prohibited press access,« Morten Janstrup said, adding that this was entirely his own decision and that he was entitled to make this decision as Head of Communications at the Faculty.

The inquiry into the University of Copenhagen’s handling of the affair by legal advisers Kammeradvokaten is due next week, and according to Morten Janstrup, the report »must suffice«.

Do you have a good story? We would like to hear from you. In the meantime, like us on Facebook for features, guides and tips on upcoming events and follow us on Twitter for links to other Copenhagen academia news stories..