Senior defence official failed to keep minister up-to-date on Den Helder

The most senior civil servant in the defence ministry was aware of senior misconduct at navy operations in Den Helder last year but appears not to have informed the minister, the Volkskrant reports on Wednesday.

Confidential correspondence in the hands of the paper shows secretary general Ton Annink wrote to a man who blew the whistle on goings-on at the base in September 2010 and assured him steps were being taken.
On Monday, defence minister Hans Hillen told MPs he was not aware of the problems at CAMS Force Vision, and they had come as a complete shock.
This implies Annick had not kept his minister informed, the paper said.
MPs and Hillens are due to debate the situation in Den Helder on Wednesday.
This week it emerged that two offcers at a navy department in Den Helder have been disciplined for making improper use of military cars, fiddling their holiday entitlement and ‘undesirable behaviour’.
The disciplinary hearing followed a number of allegations by a whistleblower about the prestigious CAMS Force Vision unit, where software and sea defence systems are developed.
Military police are now investigating further to establish if any more serious crimes have been committed.
D66 party leader Alexander Pechtold told the paper: ‘Either he [the minister] did not know, in which case he was at fault or he did know and was also at fault.’

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