Koen van Laar started as new policy worker at the Bureau of the Representative of the Dutch Central Government, as per March 1. Van Laar is the successor of Elze Woudstra who, until December 2011, had held this position for three years. On his first working day, Van Laar was formally introduced by his colleague Georgette van Steensel, to acting Island Governor Roy Smith, the Island Council and the Executive Council.
Head of Personnel Affairs of the public entity Saba, Marva Donker, gave Van Laar the first tour of the administration building, during which he was also introduced to several department heads. The new policy worker was also warmly welcomed by his new colleagues at the Public Entity and Kingdom Service Caribbean Netherlands (Rijksdienst Caribisch Nederland, RCN).
Van Laar hails from the Ministry of Infrastructure and Environment in The Hague, and has worked in the past for the ministries of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality, and Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations. He has also gained experience in local administration at the municipality of Rotterdam, and is to be considered a professional in public administration. With Van Laar’s appointment on Saba and with Rita van der Zee in St.
Eustatius, the Bureau of the Representative of the Dutch Central Government is now permanently represented on all three islands of the Caribbean Netherlands. Van Laar will be working at the RCN Office in The Bottom.
This is much welcome news. Finally a representative that will be residing on Saba. With this new addition lets hope that within short their will be a separation and that the Kingdom Representative will soon have his own office space on the island where people can go and visit instead of having to cluster everything at the RCN Offices. But this is a positive development.