Published On: Mon, Sep 2nd, 2013

Missing link in the SONA saga

StolteSloppy bookkeeping at SONA has quite rightly reflected upon the role of current Kingdom Representative, Wilbert Stolte.  Between 2008 and 2011, whilst Stolte was its treasurer, the accounts by all accounts were “messy.”

But it was not until after Stolte was promoted to Dutch representative in the BES public entities that alarm bells started to ring. He is a member of the Dutch CDA party and it was his CDA chum who as Minister of Internal Affairs appointed him.

Fast forward now to 17 September 2012 and to the creation by Stolte’s RCN of a company called Saba Statia Cable Systems. The aim of this firm was to exploit the undersea cable that would bring more efficient communication services to these islands. A worthy enough aim but for the fact that the Dutch State audit service determined that some EUR one million working capital was not legitimate.

Plasterk who is currently Minister for Internal Affairs and therefore Stolte’s boss seems to be OK with this. But I am not. A company that is registered with the Bonaire Chamber of Commerce from a hotel address does not seem legitimate. Furthermore, its entry is supported by a legal entity with no fixed address.

The impression of further hanky-panky is created by the fact that the SSCS website was registered and hosted by GoDaddy. And “Go Daddy” is exactly what Stolte should do if he cannot explain the questionable background behind this company and the eventual use and destination of its funds.

The RCN is a strange layer of administration between those who govern in the Netherlands and those who are governed in the Caribbean Netherlands. The geographical location of Bonaire where the RCN is effectively based is remote. Its purpose is to lubricate the administration processes of these islands, not clog up the wheels by setting up seemingly fly-by-night companies.

We are still waiting for the physical link to the subsea cable and to learn about the human connections that were meant to achieve it. We do not need more chums from within the Chronic Dysfunctional Appeal party. We need political responsibility and financial accountability. A full investigation to connect all the dots is now ongoing…

James Russell

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