From today's Amigoe.com Maybe one of our Aruban members could explain the details of this "charter". Sure as shootin', i have no clue and am very interested.
Parliament to vote for Charter for the Kingdom of the Netherlands
1 Sep, 2010, 08:06 (GMT -04:00)
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The public gallery of the parliament was crowded with MEP-supporters this morning, and the former premier Nelson Oduber (MEP) was present as well.
ORANJESTAD — The public gallery was crowded this morning with MEP-supporters, amongst whom Nelson Oduber, in a protest against the amendments of the Charter of the Kingdom of the Netherlands on which the parliament will have to vote today. In any case, Premier Mike Eman (AVP) does not expect any delay in the last actions that are still necessary for the dismantlement of the Netherlands Antilles per October 10th. He stated this yesterday during the farewell visit of outgoing Premier Jan Peter Balkenende (CDA).
States-chairman Paul Croes (AVP) immediately tried to end the shouting from the gallery by issuing warnings. Party-chairman Booshi Wever (MEP) had asked for the same ‘tolerance’ that was shown at other discussions in which the audience had exactly supported ‘green’ (government – to no avail. Andin Bikker (PDR) was the first speaker who argued for acceptance of his amendment, which he called an ‘elegant solution’ in order not to obstruct the forming of new countries, but simultaneously solving the problem that his party and the MEP have with article 27 section 3 and section 4. Both parties consider that article as a substantial intervention in the autonomy of Aruba. Bikker says it is great to be good friends with the Netherlands. “However, one cannot expect that those friends come to your house to drink whisky and beer and before you know it, end up in your bedroom with your wife and your wallet.”
As second speaker, parliamentarian Eveline Wever-Croes (MEP) phrased it as follows this morning. “It boils down to Geert Wilders and Hero Brinkman soon determining what is going to happen on Aruba. If we hand in our autonomy now, we will never get it back.”
The acceptance of the Charter amendments today requires a two-third majority in the States. There’s a very small chance this will occur, as MEP has eight seats in the parliament and PDR indicated it would almost certainly abstain from voting if article 27 is not adjusted. If there is no two-third majority today, then the subject will be discussed in the parliament again on Thursday. With this so-called second reading, the Charter amendments could still be adopted with a ‘normal’ majority. As government party AVP has the majority in the parliament with 12 seats, and already declared to be in favor of the Charter amendments, Aruba will almost certainly therefore adopt these before the end of the week.
It is against this background Premier Eman stated yesterday that he did not expect any delay. Outgoing Premier Jan Peter Balkenende did not wish to comment on the matter. Just like on the neighboring islands, which Balkenende visited the past days, he did not respond yesterday to questions from the press, although they were initially invited for a press conference at the Administrative Office. That invitation appeared to be a mistake, Premier Eman admitted. “He does not want to say anything because he is an outgoing premier and a cabinet formation is now in progress in the Netherlands. Both matters call for prudence in order not to make any statements that could bind a future cabinet.”
In any case, the legal procedure must be finalized by September 15th so that the Antilles can be dismantled on October 10th. After the acceptance by the Aruban parliament, the Lower Chamber still has to discuss the Charter amendments next week, the National Council of Ministers has to meet for a formal approval, and there’s still the Round Table Conference. After his conversation with the Dutch Premier, Eman concluded that in any case ‘all persons involved expect that the political changes will succeed on time’.