Hugo de Jonge under fire over private email use for official business


Prime minister Mark Rutte has been summoned to parliament to explain why former health minister Hugo de Jonge used his personal iCloud email address for communications about various work-related issues, even though this contravenes official recommendations.

Opposition parties say this could mean crucial information about the way the coronavirus crisis was handled has been lost.

Rutte, and home affairs minister Hanke Bruins Slot have been told to report back on whether the information from the iCloud account can be securely stored and made public for the formal inquiry into the government’s coronavirus strategy before 9.30am on Thursday.

MPs are due to debate the health ministry’s controversial face mask deal with former civil servant and CDA activist Sywert van Lienden later in the day.

The Volkskrant reported last month that De Jonge may have triggered that deal by contacting senior officials about the proposal using the Whatsapp message service.

The public prosecution department is currently investigating the agreement following a formal complaint by staffing agency Randstad, which provided several workers free of charge to what it thought was a non profit venture.

The €100m government order netted Van Lienden €9m and the others €5m each.

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