The Platform of Antillean and Aruban Councils PAAB in the Netherlands wants according an article in The Daily Herald the Curaçao Parliament to organise a protest against the law proposal of Member of the Second Chamber of Dutch Parliament André Bosman of the liberal democratic VVD party to restrict the residency of people from the Dutch Caribbean in the Netherlands. The PAAB, organised through the Movement to Promote the Participation of Dutch Caribbean persons in The Netherlands MAAPP, adopted a resolution on August 17, on Tula Day, in which the Curaçao Parliament was requested to take action against the Bosman law proposal. The PAAB wants the Parliament to reconfirm that it is against the introduction of requirements with which people from Aruba, Curaçao and St. Maarten have to comply before they can take up permanent residence in the Netherlands, as is stated in Bosman’s law proposal. According to the PAAB, the Dutch citizenship cannot be divided, meaning split in two whereby people in the Netherlands would have a different Dutch citizenship than those living on the islands. The Curaçao Parliament should make it known that it rejects any degradation of the Dutch citizenship. The PAAB asked Parliament to persuade the Curaçao Government to adopt these views and to inform the Parliaments of the Netherlands, Aruba and St. Maarten of its stance regarding the VVD law initiative. The PAAB sees a role for the Curaçao Parliament to head the protest against the law proposal, which has yet to be handled by first the Second Chamber and then in the First Chamber. The MAAPP should be actively involved in organising this protest.
Curaçao’s Parliament should further make an effort to realise more policies that would benefit the wellbeing and welfare of the people on the islands, PAAB contended. A better standard of living would not enhance the wellbeing of all people, but it would keep deprived and poorly educated people from migrating to The Netherlands in search of a better future. In its resolution the PAAB recited its objections to the VVD law proposal. According to the PAAB, solidarity is a key principle within the Kingdom of the Netherlands and this law proposal would violate that principle. The concept of reciprocity, used by Bosman as a reason for introducing restrictions for the registration of Dutch Caribbean persons because the islands limit the possibilities for persons from the Netherlands to take up permanent residence, does not hold ground for the PAAB. The concept of reciprocity feels “incredible” considering the size of the populations of the islands in comparison to that of the Netherlands. The Netherlands has a population of more than 16 million, whereas Aruba has some 103,000 residents, Curaçao 151,000 and St. Maarten more or less 50,000. The admittance regulation for the islands dates back to 1903, at which time the islands were a colony of The Netherlands, to protect the local, fragile economies from an influx from the motherland. Dutch Frisian islands like Texel also have an admittance regulation to prevent the small communities from being “deregulated by an invasion from the Dutch mainland.”
PAAB further pointed out that the Dutch Government considered it necessary to introduce the Law on Admittance and Expulsion for Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba when these islands became public entities of the Netherlands per October 10, 2010, to protect the small communities of these islands. For these reasons it is in PAAB’s view “hypocritical” to give reciprocity as a motive to come with a law proposal which would make it possible for the Netherlands to refuse people from Aruba, Curaçao and St. Maarten from taking up permanent residence if they do not comply with the requirements and even to send them back.
PAAB’s resolution went not only to Willemstad, but also to the Parliaments and Governments of Aruba, St. Maarten and the Netherlands. The Consultative Body for persons of Dutch Caribbean descent in the Netherlands OCaN also has protested against the VVD law proposal on several occasions. St. Maarten’s Parliament’s Permanent Committee for Kingdom Affairs and Inter-Parliamentary Relations is set to meet on Monday about the Bosman Law.