MPs want an independent inquiry to get to the bottom of a justice department payment to a drugs baron which led to the resignation of two ministers.
A large majority of MPs supported calls by ChristenUnie leader Arie Slob to set up an inquiry during Tuesday’s debate on the resignations of Ivo Opstelten and Fred Teeven on Monday.
The ministers stood down after it emerged they had wrongly informed parliament about the return of 4.7 million guilders to convicted drugs dealer Cees H in 2001.
Teeven was then a public prosecutor and reached the deal to pay the money back to H via a Luxemburg bank account without the full knowledge of his superiors or the tax office.
MPs said the revelations have left many questions unanswered about the settlement and the way parliament was informed.
Prime minister Mark Rutte suggested at the start of the debate that the new, still to be named, justice minister should decide if there is any merit in an investigation.
During the debate, opposition MPs said they wanted to know why the cabinet had not told parliament all the facts about the case and why the prime minister had not pressed Teeven on the issue following media publications.
The junior minister said several times he could not remember the details of the settlement, which legal experts say is extremely unlikely.
Cees H told television current affairs show Nieuwsuur on Tuesday evening he had no objections to the details being made public. He said he had nothing to hide and had not had to do anything in return for the money, despite suggestions to the contrary.
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