Housing corporation commissioners resign

4th February 2009, Comments 0 comments

The entire supervisory board of the Amsterdam housing corporation Rochdale has resigned.

AMSTERDAM—The commissioners recognised that events of recent months have destroyed public confidence in the board.

Rochdale has been in the news in connection with the questionable practices of its CEO Hubert Möllenkamp, who on Sunday was sacked for embezzlement. An investigation revealed he had awarded himself unrecorded bonuses, salary increases and extra pension rights.

Housing Minister Eberhard van der Laan is now determining whether a criminal investigation should be started against Möllenkamp. The former Rochdale commissioners have advised the minister to appoint an external supervisor as soon as possible.

Möllenkamp didn't want to go into the transactions he profited from as long as the case is open. “In general, I want to reveal that I didn’t act alone in a single transaction,” he said in the NRC. “It isn’t possible to work alone in an organization the size of Rochdale. The co-director and the commissioner have oversight.”

The position of the commissioners has become untenable, interim-director Gerard Erents said this morning. “The pressure on the commissioners is immense. They’ve resigned to prevent their roles from becoming a continual focus of attention.” The Ministry of Housing, Spatial Planning and the Environment (VROM) “respects this decision.” It will be made clear later this week if a new Board of Commissioners will be appointed soon, or if an external supervisor will come in its place.

Deloitte is still investigating a few of Rochdale’s transactions in which Möllenkamp was involved. According to the former director, the transactions were made following the rules. “For every transaction there’s a valuation rapport. This is necessary in order to get clearance from the Ministry of VROM. And the notary doesn’t allow any transactions without approval,” said Möllenkamp. The bonuses he received also weren’t a secret: “Otherwise, the accountant would have noticed.”

Radio Netherlands/NRC Handelsblad/Expatica

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