Published On: Wed, Sep 17th, 2014

Press release from former Minister of Finance George Jamaloodin – Healthy start position? Or maybe not?

George JamaloodinWILLEMSTAD - Recently, I have been played on the radio an excerpt of the conversation between the Committee for Financial Supervision (CFT) and the Standing Committee on Finances in Parliament. From certain corners of the society I received many attacks. What is striking is the silence on the content and scope of what has happened during that meeting. Hence this press release.

Cabinet Schotte, and I in particular, are blamed for squandering the sound financial position of Curaçao by mismanagement. This obvious inaccuracy has always disturbed me and it continues to do so. It is sad to see how politicians who claim to be sincere, honest and morally superior to everyone else, can state such inaccuracies with dry eyes. This while the President of the CFT has contradicted what these politicians are saying.

Remco Meijer, a journalist for the newspaper Volkskrant, held an interview with the President of the CFT, Age Bakker, and he had the following to say:

Bakker: “No, the Caribbean countries don’t cost a lot of money”

Journalist: “In the Dutch Parliament there is a lot of murmuring about Curaçao. With the constitutional reform in 2010, a large part of the debt was restructured by the Netherlands. Within two years it was back to a financial mess.”

Bakker: “With the restructuring, some underlying problems were not solved. The country had two structural bleeders, associated with the relatively old population. It was necessary to increase the retirement age from 60 to 65 without a long transition period. That has happened. The health care costs were too high. There is now a basic insurance with a smaller package and a higher premium. That takes the main causes of those debts away.”

In other words, contrary to what many would have you believe, Curacao did not have a healthy starting position, because a number of underlying problems were not resolved on October 10, 2010.

In Bakker's words, "the country had two structural bleeders", dating from long before the arrival of Cabinet-Schotte. During the aforementioned standing committee meeting, one of the committee members tried to get the word mismanagement out of the mouth of the President of the CFT. Bakker refused to go along and repeated what he said earlier. The excerpt that I've played on the radio is therefore no more and no less than what was already in the public domain. The so-called outrage by the person concerned must therefore be seen for what it is, namely an attempt to hide the fact that he has been exposed.

George Jamaloodin
Former Minister of Finance

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