Telegraaf newspaper accuses Schotte of buying votes

POSTED: 10/8/12 3:52 PM

WILLEMSTAD – There are indications that ousted Prime Minister Gerrit Schotte is busy buying votes to secure his position after the October 19 elections, reporters Edwin Timmers and Alex de Vries wrote in the Telegraaf yesterday. “Islanders are concerned because this way the democracy on the island comes further under pressure.”
Timmers and De Vries base their story on “rumors” that are “becoming more and more persistent” that Schotte’s MFK-party is offering young voters “money, Blackberries and even laptops.”
By showing a picture of a completed ballot voters would earn 350 guilders ($195). The main voting bureau in Willemstad “takes the allegations very seriously but is powerless,” the newspaper reports. “There is no law that forbids people to take a picture of their vote in the voting booth,” spokeswoman and former Lt. Governor Lisa Dindial told the reporters.
The “alleged practices” are “the top of the iceberg” the newspaper states.
“Already during the 2010 elections Schotte had by far the largest campaign budget of which the origin never became clear. The current costly PR-campaign on local radio and TV stations calls for questions about the financing. It is certain that there are close ties with the Italian mafia and with the dubious gambling boss Robbie dos Santos who – according to the Intelligence Service Curacao – once already gave Schotte two million for political favors.”
The reporters quote former MFK faction leader and now independent MP Dean Rozier: “When MFK-candidate doctor Payo Schoop asked shortly after the election victory in 2010 where all that money was coming from Gerrit became outraged. Things never became right again between the party and Schoop.”
Timmers and De Vries wrote that Schotte was ‘too busy campaigning for a reaction.” They note that Schotte’s party-members have started a smear-campaign against Rozier, whose departure from the MFK cause the fall of the Schotte-cabinet.

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