Dutch news in brief, Friday 23 October 2009

23rd October 2009, Comments 0 comments

Read the roundup of today's Dutch press from Radio Netherlands.

Economic affairs minister wants fuel prices on SatNav systems
Economic Affairs Minister Maria van der Hoeven wants oil companies to make their fuel prices available via SatNav systems as well as on the internet. Motorists must also be able to find the cheapest petrol station via SatNav.

De Telegraaf reports the minister would make her demands compulsory as of 1 July 2010 should the oil companies fail to comply with her requests.

According to the minister, unlike power prices and mobile phone rates, it is very difficult to compare fuel prices while on the road.

Van der Hoeven said: “When petrol stations make their fuel prices easier to find and compare, their customers will benefit more from the price differences between petrol stations along motorways.”

The economic affairs minister said she is threatening to take action because petrol stations and oil companies have ignored earlier calls to make all their fuel prices easily available to motorists.

The Ecorys research bureau says price differences can be as big as 4.6 euro cents per litre.

Motorists pay too much for their fuel particularly along the main motorways.

Widespread sexual abuse of mentally handicapped
AD reports many people with a slight mental disability are the victims of sexual abuse.

Dirk Verstegen, Director of the VOBC/LVG, a national organisation of 21 special needs treatment centres, said most of the residents of the treatment centres have been abused at least once in their lives.

According to him, medical files show hundreds of people has been victimised. “Mildly mentally disabled people are deferred to us in case of serious behavioural issues, for instance by the child care authorities. Their treatment for the most part focuses on sexual abuse.”

AD writes there are no solid figures on the number of victims. Often no report is filed, and even when it does happen, the authorities do not register whether the victim is a mentally disabled person.

Experts are concerned about the increased chance of mentally handicapped people who become victims of sexual abuse. In addition to their limited mental capacities, they are generally at a disadvantaged social and economic position, which makes them easy prey for lover boys, gang rapists and people who commit incest.

Chinese gangs accused of fixing Dutch Premier League matches
Canadian investigative reporter Declan Hill said Chinese gangs in Amsterdam and Rotterdam have bribed Premier League football players to influence the outcome of matches at the behest of influential Asian gambling operators.

de Volkskrant writes Hill’s accusations are based on conversations with sources in the Asian gambling world.

The Dutch football union KNVB is taking the matter seriously. Director Hans Kesler said: “If there is reason, we will investigate any match.”

Declan Hill, who has done five years’ worth of global research into bribery in football, said the Dutch teams in question are lower-ranking Premier League teams which in the past few weeks deliberately lost matches by a wide margin.

He said he knows the names of the teams and the suspect results, but will only mention them in his book, which is scheduled to be published ahead of the World Football Championships in 2010.
KNVB Director Kesler said the accusations have taken him by surprise, but added he cannot rule out that professional teams in Dutch football have been bribed. “No system is watertight. The underworld always succeeds in finding loopholes in the law.”

The European football union UEFA is wrapping up its investigation into 40 matches in national and international competitions.

Most of the teams under investigation are from Eastern Europe, but Belgian Karl Dhont, who leads the investigation, said bribery can also occur among Western European teams.

Controversial monument to 1940 Rotterdam bombing
de Volkskrant publishes a photograph of a statue outside the War and Resistance Museum in Rotterdam.

The paper writes that the statue, a scale model of a German bomber of the type that was used in the 14 May 1940 bombing stood on its tail, was greeted with mixed emotions when it was unveiled.

Sculptor Onno Poiesz, who named the statue The Shadow, said it is ‘a marking’ for the generations who did not witness the bombing.

The German bombing was intended to break Dutch resistance in the battle for the Maas Bridge. The resulting fire raged for several days; 850 people were killed while 25,000 homes and 11,000 other buildings were destroyed.

Radio Netherlands / Georg Schreuder Hes / Expatica

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