Bourgeois refuses to appoint three mayors in municipalities with facilities for French speakers
Flemish minister for public governance and local and provincial government Geert Bourgeois N-VA has failed to appoint the French-speaking mayoral candidates for Kraainem, Wezembeek and Linkebeek, three municipalities with facilities for French speaker in the Brussels periphery. Putting the matter into perspective, Bourgeois states that they were unwilling to comply with or even recognize the language legislation. MP for the FDF party Damien Thiéry, who was nominated for the mayoral position in Linkebeek for the fourth time running, was once again overlooked by Bourgeois. Thièry was nominated three times during the former government period, but each time the competent Flemish minister refused to appoint him, because he kept violating language legislation.“I am the most popular mayor in Flanders and Bourgeois is wasting his time with his meddling,” says Thiéry, who finds Bourgeois’ actions scandalous and undemocratic and intends to bring an action to the Council of State together with Kraainem and Wezembeek-Oppem candidates Véronique Caprasse and François Van Hoobrouck d'Aspre. “I confirm that we plan to fight Bourgeois’ new procedure with the Council of State,” he said, while adding that he even intends to take the matter to the European Court. This case will be a first for the Council of State’s new procedure which was introduced as part of the sixth state reform agreement on the Brussel-Halle-Vilvoorde constituency split, and stipulates that a bilingual chamber of representatives has the final say. Until a final decision has been made, the three rejected candidate mayors will serve as ‘delegated mayors’ and enjoy all the powers pertaining to their office. They will however officially remain aldermen and can only be replaced in this function when they have finally been appointed as mayor.