The Daily Herald writes that members of the Second Chamber wrote: “We should not get rid of the Caribbean part of our Kingdom, but realise advancement together. That is the best way to serve the people and increase bearing surface for the Kingdom. That demands a lot of politicians, on both sides of the ocean.”
Members of the Second Chamber of the Dutch Parliament of four different parties, Roelof van Laar of the Labour Party PvdA, Wassila Hachchi of the Democratic Party D66, Gert Jan Segers of the ChristianUnion and Liesbeth van Tongeren of the green left party Groen-Links stated this in a written contribution on the occasion of Kingdom Day, December 15. The four Members of Parliament (MPs) said that the liberal democratic VVD party, Socialist Party (SP) and the Party for Freedom PVV had all given up on the Kingdom, that they didn’t see a future for a Kingdom that connects the Netherlands and the Dutch Caribbean.
The VVD and SP want a commonwealth construction with looser ties and cooperation on a voluntary basis. The PVV wants to sever all ties with the islands.
The PvdA, D66, Groen-Links and CU oppose the PVV, VVD and SP view. “When we loosen the ties, we also deny the fact that history has given us to each other. There is so much in the past and present that connects us. Dutch citizens move there and the other way around. We do business together. And we invest in things like education and health care. The cooperation within the Kingdom has yielded us many good things in everything that needs to be better,” stated Van Laar, Hachchi, Van Tongeren en Segers. “In a commonwealth, the possibility to address each other on success and failure, and to intervene if necessary, no longer exists. Progress is only possible with good gov-ernance. Votes are still being bought and arranged in our Kingdom. There is corruption and financial boundaries are transgressed. Both in the Netherlands, as well as the Caribbean part of our Kingdom.
“Higher governments and independent jurisdiction are needed to tackle that. Power and contra-power! This is hard to organise on the islands without the cooperation of others, without the Kingdom,” the four Members of Parliament stated. “Our Kingdom is not perfect. The Netherlands dominates the decision taking in the Kingdom Council of Ministers and because of that is sometimes seen as an opponent, while all countries strive for the same values and objectives. Together we should more often give more content to those values and set objectives for the entire Kingdom. That way we give content together to the principles that we have set in the Kingdom Charter.”
The MPs were happy to note that the Kingdom partners have started to set objectives for the children, to reduce the number of children growing up in poverty and to prevent that children become victims of violence, neglect or abuse. “Children have to be able to get the most out of themselves by making sure that they don’t go to school hungry. They have to speak their languages and attend a school that is properly managed. Together we can achieve that.” Setting goals together is important. “Sustainable goals, development goals, social goals and goals to improve and strengthen government. We can and have to hold on to each other in achieving these goals. We owe that to our people. To do that we have to hold on to each other, remain connected. We strongly emphasize that message on Kingdom Day,” the four MPs concluded their contribution.