Published On: Fri, Feb 1st, 2013

CPA-lawyer awaits approval of CPA-director

WILLEMSTAD – Company lawyer of Curaçao Port Authority (CPA), Bertie Braam, states he’s awaiting the approval of CPA-director Humberto de Castro, or the board of directors, to lodge an appeal against the verdict regarding the two former directors Augustin Diaz and Richard Lopez Ramirez on contracting exorbitant pension schemes. The former directors were recently put in the right by the judge. “The Board of Commissioners has in any case given the go-ahead to lodge an appeal. Although the Board of Commissioners supports the board of directors, the latter is to make the final decision. I have confidence in the case and even indicated not to charge my honorarium in the first phase. The honorarium could be arranged later on if the case turns out positive for CPA”, said Braam. He said the court fees could amount to ‘around 20,000 guilders’. “This of course does not countervail the tons if CPA is put in the right”, said Braam.

After the verdict was announced, Braam said he wanted to lodge an appeal ‘considering the judge hadn’t pronounced judgment on the amounts paid by CPA’. During the procedure Braam repeatedly argued that Diaz and Lopez were paid ‘unjustified and too high pension premiums. The former directors challenged this.

Braam stated CPA paid 1,414,805 guilders for Diaz’ pension scheme and 1,387,775 guilders for Lopez Ramirez’ pension scheme. According to the investigation report and calculations from accountant Terry Hernandez, who was assisted by Keesen Actuaries, the total amount for Diaz should have been 428,971 guilders and for Lopez Ramirez 437,734 guilders.

The retired directors argued that ‘all organs of CPA, the Board of Commissioners, the board of directors, the economic and the legal shareholder (the island territory Curaçao and the Institute Implementation Privatization, StIP) approved the actions. The court acknowledged this and Diaz and Lopez Ramirez were put in the right.

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