The Board of Governors of the Flemish Audiovisual Fund (VAF) has terminated the contract of its managing director Luckas vander Taelen.

Financial director Hans Everaert and Pierre Drouot (producer of Toto The Hero) will take over the running of the Fund until a new MD is appointed.

The reasons for the ousting of Vander Taelen remain unclear, but it is understood that his outspoken opposition to Government plans for restructuring public media funding played a part in his sudden departure.

In a statement, the board praised Vander Taelen for his achievements in setting up and developing the Flemish Audiovisual Fund (established in 2002), but said that the time has come to "take it to to the next level."

The statement also referred to a breach of confidence between the managing director and his Board which made the further functioning of Luckas Vander Taelen within the Fund "almost impossible."

The board said the decision to remove Vander Taelen was taken with the aim of allowing the Flemish audiovisual creation sector to further develop in the best possible circumstances, as well as to be part of open and constructive talks with both the minister of culture and the entire sector about the creation of the future audiovisual policy. A new m-d is expected to be announced before the end of the month. Geoffrey Macnab