Verdonk and VVD argue over portfolio
17 September 2007, THE HAGUE - Rita Verdonk has accused Liberal VVD leader Mark Rutte of failing to inform the party conference in Veldhoven accurately about the portfolio she was given after the most recent general elections.
17 September 2007
THE HAGUE - Rita Verdonk has accused Liberal VVD leader Mark Rutte of failing to inform the party conference in Veldhoven accurately about the portfolio she was given after the most recent general elections.
Rutte told the conference that Verdonk had been allowed to choose what topic she would concentrate on as MP, and chose for education and youth affairs at the time. But Verdonk's spokesperson Ed Sinke says she actually wanted to be the faction specialist on immigration policy. Rutte apparently would not allow it however, Sinke said in the Volkskrant on Monday.
Rutte's spokesperson had a different interpretation. "It has been a custom for decades that a minister who becomes an MP does not take on the portfolio for which they were responsible as minister." Verdonk was minister for immigration and integration before entering Parliament.
Rutte's spokesperson also pointed out that former ministers Johan Remkes (home affairs) and Atzo Nicolaï (kingdom relations) are also now active in different policy areas as MPs. "Otherwise there would be the risk that as MP you might have to assess the policy you drew up while in government."
[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2007]
Subject: Dutch news