Silvio Berlusconi has been Italy’s prime minister three times, making him the country’s longest-serving post-war premier. His leadership was undermined by sex scandals, and by the growing Euro zone sovereign debt crisis, and Berlusconi resigned as prime minister in November 2011, but mounted a comeback in late 2012.
Berlusconi lived in chaos, says girlfriend Francesca Pascale
Reuters in Rome
Former Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi lived in chaos, with hangers-on taking advantage of him, his girlfriend has revealed.
Francesca Pascale, 28, who is 49 years his junior, has divulged fresh details of their life together after appearing with him on the cover of Vanity Fair last month.
Pascale, who caught Berlusconi's eye when she founded a fan club called "We Miss You Silvio", said she discovered an "unacceptable" mess when she moved into the 77-year-old's mansion earlier this year.
"Many people were taking advantage of him," Pascale told the Italian weekly Oggi.
"I had to intervene. They were paying €80 (HK$840) a kilo for string beans. Can you believe it?
"Huge crates of fish were being delivered to the house when everyone knows the president doesn't eat fish. He even hates the smell."
Berlusconi's political future is in doubt due to a tax fraud conviction that could see him evicted from parliament. But press reports have told of how Pascale ruled Berlusconi's Rome residence with an iron fist.
"The truth is that I have my head screwed on, I say what I think, I sort things out and he likes it," said Pascale, who hopes to marry the media mogul once his divorce from second wife, Veronica Lario, is finalised.
The interviews appear to be in part aimed at changing Berlusconi's image, damaged by reports of "bunga bunga" sex parties and giving expensive gifts to a series of glamorous women.