Sunday 12 July 2020

‘PVV needs more transparency about finances and decision-making’

The anti-immigration party PVV needs to become more ‘transparent’ about its finances and strategic decisions, MP Louis Bontes says in an interview with Monday’s Volkskrant.

Bontes resigned as a member of the PVV’s four-strong parliamentary management team last week, saying he could no longer take responsibility for its decisions.

‘I’ve had two or three meetings in the past two years,’ he said at the time. ‘I am responsible for things I know nothing about.’

Popularity

The PVV currently has 15 MPs but its popularity is rising in the polls, as support for the ruling coalition flounders.

Bontes has also resigned as treasurer of the foundation which distributes the money given to the party by the state to fund its parliamentary activities.

‘I do not want to take responsibility for spending which I have no control over,’ Bontes is quoted as saying by the Volkskrant. ‘The parliamentary subsidy is to be used for spending on the parliamentary party. In my experience it also goes to the party at large.’

The Volkskrant says the PVV’s recent ‘resistance’ campaign and last month’s demonstration in The Hague were funded with the foundation’s money. ‘But it should have come from the donations which Geert Wilders manages,’ Bontes says.

Accountant

‘If it is paid for by the foundation, I will get into trouble with the accountant.’ This has already happened several times, Bontes said.

Bontes has been an MP for the party since 2010 and will not resign as an MP. He plans to draw up a programme which will increase transparency within the PVV, which has no formal members.

Because the PVV has no members, it does not receive government subsidies to run the campaigning side of its operation and relies instead on donations. The parliamentary party is fully funded by the state. The PVV is thought to generate significant funding from Israeli and far-right supporters in the US.

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