Par stands to lose half its seats – Survey: Schotte and Wiels stable in election forecast

POSTED: 10/3/12 1:14 PM

Curacao – Gerrit Schotte’s MFK and Helmin Wiels’ Pueblo Soberano will win the same number of seats in the October 19 elections as in 2010, but their coalition with the MAN will fall one seat short of a majority. That is the outcome of a survey by Fundashon Pro Pueblo, a foundation that is part of the movement Frente Sivil.
While many people in Curacao look with suspicion at any political poll, this latest survey confirms the trend from an earlier one that indicates that the differences between the large parties will be marginal, that Alex Rosaria’s Pais will become a force to reckon with and that Emily de Jongh-Elhage’s Par will lose four of its eight seats.
The survey is based on 1,375 queries whereby participants had to give their age, the type of work they do, their education level, what they think about Curacao’s status and the party they will vote for. The result: MFK 5 seats, Par, PS and Pais 4 each, DP/Laboral, PNP, FOL and MAN 1 each.

In the meantime, the situation in Willemstad remains volatile, after the parliament’s Secretary General Silvin Cijntje indicated in a meeting with department heads that he does not recognize independent MP Dean Rozier and Fol-MP Anthony Godett as the parliament’s president and vice-president.
The Amigoe reported that Cijntje gives instructions to the parliament’s staff and that he in turn follows the orders of Pueblo Soberano-MP Ivar Asjes and MFK-MP Amerigo Thodé. The position of Cijntje indicates that he does not recognize the majority of the parliament.
The public prosecutor’s office in Willemstad has asked for footages from Sunday’s press conference at the MFK head quarters from TV-station CBA. The station has cooperated with the request.
At this press conference, MFK-MP Gilmar Pisas accused Dean Rozier and Governor Frits Goedgedrag of corruption.
The prosecutor’s office says that the statement Pisas made at the press conference differs from the statement he made to them in August.
Pisas, who is a policeman, first said in local media that there had been attempts to bribe him into leaving his party. “Attempted bribery is a criminal act,” the prosecutor’s office’s spokesman Norman Serphos said. This is why Pisas was summoned to make an official statement.
“His statement and what we heard on Sunday are not the same,” Serphos said. “This is why we have asked for the footage from TV-station CBA. The prosecutor is reviewing the video right now. Together with the National Detective Agency (Landsrecherche) we will see what has to be done.”
The prosecutor’s office regrets statements made by Pisas and Schotte as if the office did nothing with the August-statement. “That is not true,” Serphos told the Amigoe. “The prosecutor’s office asked the landsrecherche to do an investigation. From the beginning people have been interviewed, sometimes twice. Accusations of bribery and corruption are very serious. We are working hard on it and this has our priority.”
Serphos could not say what the difference is between the two statements, “Other facts came up and more names have been mentioned that were not in the original statement.”
Sources within the prosecutor’s office hold it for possible that Pisas will be prosecuted. On Sunday Pisas said that his former fellow-MFK-party member Dean Rozier had attempted to bribe him. He also said that Governor Frits Goedgedrag had engineered the cabinet’s fall behind the scenes. The governor is inviolable and is not able to defend himself. It is possible that the prosecutor’s office will take up this investigation as well.

On another front, ousted parliament President Ivar Asjes has asked Governor Frits Goedgedrag in a letter for clarification about the screening of ministers in the Betrian interim-cabinet. “How is it possible that this screening went so fast, while this process lasts at least three weeks,” Asjes wondered.
“I regret that the governor has persisted and has chosen to sign governmental decrees to appoint the ministers of the interim-cabinet,” Asjes wrote. He labeled the swearing in of the interim-cabinet as “a coup d’état orchestrates by a bunch of bribed parliamentarians.”
Asjes spoke in his letter of a treacherous and corrupt act. “It will cost our community 3.5 million guilders extra, if you count the costs for the ministers of the interim-cabinet and the costs of the elections.”

Asjes charges in his letter that the interim-cabinet has not made a single attempt to approach the parliament. “I will maintain our state regulation. I am convinced that on October 19 the majority of the people will reject the interim-cabinet and that real democracy will be restored.”
Away from all these controversies, Prime Minister Stanley Betrian said in an interview with Maarten Schakel on Dolfijn Radio that he has no political ambitions. “When I am finished it is over. I am a musician and that is what I want to spend my time on. I am doing this right now for the country,” he said.
Betrian called the events of the past weekend interesting. “Schotte wanted to stay in Fortì until October 20 and I was okay with that.” Later on Sunday Schotte left fort Amsterdam and that gave Betrian the space to do his job.

The interim PM sees Curacao’s financial situation as a tough problem. “The situation is very bad right now. There will be measures; we won’t be able to avoid that.”
Betrian says that he was reluctant to accept the temporary job. “But if nobody does it, it also touches my family and friends.”
Betrian said that he will not accept retainer pay when he is done. “I do not find it proper to receive two years of retainer pay after two months of work,” he said.

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