Published On: Sat, May 10th, 2014

Asjes has difficulty with democratic institutions


WILLEMSTAD - The Prime Minister of Curacao, Ivar Asjes has said again that he does not tolerate critical reporters. During the weekly press conference of the Council of Ministers in Fort Amsterdam, he requested a journalist, Yves Cooper to leave the hall and banned him for the next two weeks from the government center in Willemstad.

During the press conference, Prime Minister Asjes unfolded plans by the government to work on Nation Building. Curaçao has been, since October 2010, an autonomous country within the Kingdom.

Cooper saw an opportunity to ask whether the government might have been busy building castles in the air, while the crime rate in the country has its grip and the economy is stagnating

"A beautiful weather story?" the reporter asked. The Prime Minister reacted annoyed and said that he was not served by this offensive way of asking questions. After a heated discussion between the Asjes and Cooper, the Prime Minister said; “You must leave the room now and come back in two weeks.”

Ivar Asjes has a dubious reputation when it comes to respect for democratic values ​​and norms. Everyone in Curacao remembers the central role he played in 2012 during the fall of the government Schotte, who resigned after losing his majority support in parliament, but would remain caretaker until the new elections.

The new majority in the parliament could not formally prevent this, because Asjes, as President of Parliament, refused to call a meeting of parliament.

The whole charade finally ended in the coup orchestrated by the former Prime Minister, Gerrit Schotte, who occupied the center of government and refused to make place for an interim cabinet. Curaçao then went through the eye of a constitutional crisis, because for some time it was not clear which side the police was in this affair.

The election in October 2012 was won by Helmin Wiels and his party. First thing he did was renouncing his allegiance with Schotte and install a business cabinet. Confidence of his own people in the government had reached a low point after two years Schotte.

Wiels was so rigorous in the discrediting of the former Prime Minister that chose a Prime Minister from the yellow party PAR (Schotte’s political enemies) to head the business Cabinet. The Prime Minister became Daniel Hodge.

The murder of Wiels led to a power struggle within his party Pueblo Soberano. Within a month Ivar Asjes had “kicked out” all faithful followers of the murdered leader Wiels and appointed himself as Prime Minister.

According to Asjes, this was Wiels’ wishes, which he expressed in a letter sent to the formateur on April 24, 2013, a letter that no one has seen to date, and labeled as confidential by the formateur.

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