Opinion: Vote of no confidencePOSTED: 06/17/16 7:30 PM
Research by the Central Bureau of Statistics in Curacao returned a near fatal blow for the country’s politicians. Only 2.3 percent of the respondents among 2,620 households said that they trust their politicians. In other words, 97.7 percent do not trust the country’s legislators.
Suspicion towards politicians is nothing new and it is not uniquely prevalent in Curacao. It is a phenomenon across the board, and we suspect – though we obviously do not have hard evidence for it – that a similar research in, say, the Netherlands, Japan, the United States or St. Maarten would most likely return the same results.
Remarkably, with practically everyone mistrusting politicians, close to 64 percent in Curacao said that they would go and vote in September.
How does that hang?
Elections feel a bit like the magic potion taken in fairy tales whereby suddenly everything becomes better, or at least completely different.
We have seen in St. Maarten that elections do not bring about the changes people are craving for (or say they are craving for).
After every election, people are disappointed and they grumble and grumble until the next elections roll around. Then they will do the same thing they have always done since the day they were eligible to vote – and expect a different result.
The call for change is another one of those mysteries, because in general people do not like change at all.
Go tell a veteran in no matter which industry that from tomorrow he has to totally change the way he is working, and more often than not that veteran will go apeshit.
The resistance returning graduates meet when they want to apply their freshly acquired knowledge in the local job market supports this notion. These young professionals will mostly meet an attitude of: what do you know? And: we have always done it like this.
To return to the original topic, we’d say that politicians have their work cut out for them, even though we must assume that most of them are not ready to step up to the plate.
We’re on the eve of yet another election campaign – postulation day is just seven weeks away – whereby parties will wash our ears with all kinds of lofty promises that will never see the light of day. Under the surface, wheeling and dealing is the order of the day and due to intensified scrutiny of vote buying, politicians will have to get creative with their efforts to buy the loyalty, or at least the vote, of their supporters.
Transparency and integrity are key words in a world where people feel confident to trust one another, but just these two elements are missing too often in action in the political arena.
If we just limit ourselves to the most recent political upheaval – the fall of the Marcel Gumbs cabinet – we’d like to ask the question: why did MPs Maurice Lake and Silvio Matser really withdraw their support from that government? Does anybody know the answer to that question? Sure, Lake and Matser will know, and so will some others, but the truth remains hidden in the muddy waters of politics.
As long as politicians continue to behave like this, the confidence of the people will remain as low as it currently is in Curacao.