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Norway premier’s passengers got cash

AFP-JIJI

Some passengers were paid to take part in a buzz-generating video that showed Norway’s prime minister undercover as a taxi driver probing voters’ concerns, his party said Monday.

Just one month before Norway’s legislative elections that Prime Minister Jens Stoltenbeg’s center-left coalition appears likely to lose, a video was released Sunday showing him wearing a taxi driver’s uniform and sunglasses, sitting at the wheel as he drives passengers around Oslo.

But Monday, tabloid Verdens Gang revealed that five of the 14 passengers filmed with hidden cameras fitted in the cab were in fact chosen during a casting call.

“They’re five ordinary people who were asked if they wanted to take part in a video for the Labor Party and who knew nothing else, except that they were going to be picked up in a taxi,” party spokeswoman Pia Gulbrandsen said.

Each of the five received 500 kroner ($85) “as a thank you,” the Labor Party said.