You are here: Islands Islands News Dutch security agency spied on Booi, El Hage

Dutch security agency spied on Booi, El Hage

THE HAGUE--Bonaire politicians Burney el Hage and Ramonsito Booi have been illegally spied on by the Dutch intelligence and security agency AIVD, the Dutch newspaper NRC Handelsblad reported on Thursday. The Dutch Labour Party is seeking clarity from the Dutch Government.

The two politicians of the UPB party were watched by the AIVD between 2005 and 2010, the newspaper reported. Both men are suspected in the Zambezi corruption and fraud case which the Court will handle on Monday, November 25.

Booi has been charged with four cases of corruption and forgery in a notary deed, while El Hage is accused of having committed mortgage fraud and corruption. El Hage has tendered his resignation as Commissioner and former Commissioner and Member of the Antillean Parliament Booi is no longer the leader of the UPB party.

According to NRC Handelsblad, the AIVD operation was illegal and took place without knowledge or consent of the Government of the Netherlands Antilles under which Bonaire resorted at the time.

The AIVD was only allowed to carry out information and safety operations in Bonaire with the permission of the Prime Minister of the Netherlands Antilles or the head of the Antillean intelligence agency VNA.

Former Prime Minister Emily de Jongh-Elhage told the newspaper that she knew nothing of the AIVD operation. "I am shocked," she said. The AIVD operation should have been carried out under the supervision and authority of the VNA.

The AIVD reportedly gathered information via informants. The information apparently indicated that Booi and Elhage might have been involved in corruption and abuse of power. A spokesperson of the AIVD told the newspaper that it never commented on individual cases.

Sources said that top civil servants of the Dutch Ministry of Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations BZK had knowledge about the information gathered by the AIVD. According to the sources the situation was "problematic" for the Ministry because Booi and Elhage were involved in the negotiations with The Hague to integrate Bonaire in the Netherlands. On October 10, 2010, Bonaire became a public entity of the Netherlands, along with St. Eustatius and Saba.

At the time of the negotiations, the UPB party had been in power for more than ten years and the party was also a member of the Antillean Council of Ministers. Elhage was Minister of Economic Affairs between 2006 and 2007.

The Hague kept the negotiations with the UPB politicians going despite the "worrisome" AIVD reports, stated NRC journalist Joep Dohmen in the article. The AIVD continued keeping an eye on the movements of Booi and Elhage.

The Public Prosecutor's Office initiated a criminal investigation of Booi and Elhage after then State Secretary of Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations Ank Bijleveld-Schouten reached an agreement on the constitutional future of Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba. Dutch detectives carried out house searches at the residencies of Booi and El- hage in September 2009.

The newspaper article prompted Members of the Second Chamber of the Dutch Parliament Roelof van Laar and Jeroen Recourt, both of the PvdA, to pose written questions to Dutch Minister of Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations Ronald Plasterk, also of the PvdA.

The Members of Parliament (MPs) want to know if indeed the AIVD spied on Booi and Elhage and whether this operation was legal or illegal. They asked the Minister if he was aware of this operation and whether he had given permission for it.

"Were the politicians in Bonaire informed before or after this operation? Are other politicians in the Kingdom being bugged at this moment? Did this operation have influence on the negotiations for a new constitutional future of Bonaire? Did the information lead to a criminal investigation," asked Van Laar and Recourt.

Ramonsito Booi stated in a short reaction Thursday afternoon: "I will be the most sought, investigated and scrutinized politician of the Caribbean if the report in the NRC Handelsblad is true."

Image
TROPICAL STORM ERIKA INTERMEDIATE ADVISORY NUMBER 11A
Thursday, 27 August 2015
NWS NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER MIAMI FL       AL052015200 PM AST THU... Read more...
St. Maarten midday Weather Forecast for Thursday
Thursday, 27 August 2015
DATE ISSUED:  Thursday, August 27, 2015 @ 12:00 Lst (16:00 UTC) VALID UNTIL:  Friday... Read more...
Image
Cuban doctors fleeing ‘shortages & mistreatment’ protest for US visas
Wednesday, 26 August 2015
BOGOTA, Colombia--Deteriorating conditions in Venezuela are causing increasing numbers of Cuban... Read more...
Image
Antigua & Barbuda opens new state-of-the-art airport terminal
Monday, 24 August 2015
ST. JOHN’S, Antigua--Antigua and Barbuda has opened one of the most modern international airports... Read more...
Image
Katrina's unclaimed dead conjure memories of her ravages
Wednesday, 26 August 2015
NEW ORLEANS--A decade after one of the most deadly storms in U.S history, Hurricane Katrina's... Read more...
Image
US, Turkey to launch "comprehensive" anti-Islamic State operation
Monday, 24 August 2015
ANKARA--Turkey and the United States will soon launch "comprehensive" air operations to flush... Read more...
Image
Lebanese ministers walk out of meeting over garbage crisis
Wednesday, 26 August 2015
BEIRUT--The powerful Shi'ite party Hezbollah and its Christian allies walked out of an emergency... Read more...
Image
Islamic State publishes images of ancient Syrian temple destruction
Wednesday, 26 August 2015
BEIRUT/DAMASCUS--Islamic State militants published photos on Tuesday purporting to show the... Read more...
Image
Without Saudi support, talk of OPEC emergency meeting is just noise
Wednesday, 26 August 2015
DUBAI/LONDON--Once upon a time, talk of an emergency OPEC meeting would have rippled through oil... Read more...
Image
Canada's Liberals roll out economic team in tight race
Wednesday, 26 August 2015
TORONTO--Canada's Liberals reached back to their glory days on Tuesday to add some gravitas to... Read more...
Image
Dutiful daughter-in-law
Wednesday, 26 August 2015
Dear Queenie, My husband doesn't have a close relationship with his mother because his grandparents... Read more...
Image
Ask the Earth and she will tell you
Monday, 24 August 2015
Dear Editor, I recently read a letter to the editor of this newspaper from a narrow-minded... Read more...
Image
VO 65 Team Brunel to race during the 2016 St. Maarten Heineken Regatta
Wednesday, 26 August 2015
This past week hundreds of thousands of residents and visitors flocked in droves to the shores of... Read more...
Image
Brown wins FirstCaribbean Bank Open Youth Tennis Tournament
Wednesday, 26 August 2015
CAY HILL--Leshawn Brown won the Open division of the 14th annual FirstCaribbean Bank Youth Tennis... Read more...
Image
Wanted: Transgender actors for Hollywood
Wednesday, 26 August 2015
NEW YORK--When director Sean Baker was looking for transgender women to appear in his indie movie... Read more...
Image
High-end author A.L. Kennedy dives into sci-fi with Dr. Who
Wednesday, 26 August 2015
LONDON--A.L. Kennedy, the feted British writer of high-end literary fiction, knew she was reaching... Read more...
Image
Calling all Models!
Wednesday, 26 August 2015
Model casting for exquisite fashion show If you have the ability to command the catwalk with your... Read more...
Image
'It's like Deja Vu with You"
Wednesday, 26 August 2015
~ Book Launching ~ At 5:30pm this evening, Latoya Lake is launching her book It's like Déjà Vu... Read more...
Editorial - Not the answer
Wednesday, 26 August 2015
Today’s meeting of Justice Minister Dennis Richardson with his Dutch counterpart Ard van der... Read more...
Editorial - Better safe than sorry
Monday, 24 August 2015
Danny turned out to be a dud, but one could not be sure of that until it actually passed well to... Read more...
Image
Wednesday Aug. 26, 2015
Wednesday, 26 August 2015
Image
Tuesday Aug. 25, 2015
Tuesday, 25 August 2015
Notices August 26
Wednesday, 26 August 2015
Reading Programme Reach out and Read is registering children 7 to 11 on August 29 from 9:30 to... Read more...
Notices August 25
Monday, 24 August 2015
  Junior Golf: starting September 7th. Free! Ages 7-15, 3:30pm-4:45pm. Monday, Tuesday or... Read more...