Bonairean foundation wants action from Minister Plasterk

POSTED: 07/10/13 1:01 PM

KRALENDIJK – The Foundation for Good Governance in Bonaire calls on Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations Minister Ronald Plasterk to intervene resolutely in the governing crisis, Belkis Osepa reports on Caribisch Netwerk.

The foundation suggest as a possible solution to dissolve the Island /council and to call new elections “to prevent that the situation explodes.”

According to the foundation criticism towards the minister and also towards Kingdom representative Wilbert Stolte is increasing. The Foundation Good governance says that Stolte did not do his work properly as a supervisor of the functioning of the local administration and of observing legal regulations.

The governing crisis in Bonaire has been brewing for months and reached boiling point when the Public Prosecutor’s Office found Commissioner James Kroon (UPB) guilty of forgery and fraud. In the meantime Stolte refuses to react publicly to the escalating row between governor Lydia Emerencia and the UPB/Santana coalition.

Only on Monday did Stolte send a statement to the media saying that “he spoke with those involved recently.” Former Governor Curacao Frits Goedgedrag was present during these meetings and Minister Plasterk has been informed about the results. Stolte declined to make a statement about the content of the meetings.

The Foundation Good Governance sent a letter to members of the First and Second Chamber, the parliamentary committee for Kingdom Relations, and to the Island Council and the Executive Council in Bonaire. In the letter, the foundation dives deeper into Wilbert Stolte’s role.

According to the foundation the ministry planned half a year ago to commission an inquiry into the functioning of the local administration. “The conclusion of the inquiry was clear,” the foundation’s chairman Norwim Willem says. “The way the supervision was executed by the Kingdom Representative Stolte did not meet proper standards. The advice was therefore – taking into account his close ties with local politicians of one particular party – that he had to resign.”

Willem also criticizes Plasterk’s attitude. The fact that the results of the inquiry were no reason for the minister to take action is also pointed out in the letter. “Even better: recently you downplayed the situation in Bonaire in the First Chamber and you stated that you did not want to get involved in the local governing problems. The consequence of this aloof and in our eyes reprehensible attitude is now becoming visible to its full extent. The upright Governor has to leave and the politicians that are suspected of corruption are allowed to keep doing what they have always done.”

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