Sunday 17 January 2021

The caretaker coalition: what does it mean, and what happens now?

The caretaker coalition: what does it mean, and what happens now?

The Dutch cabinet has resigned in the wake of the childcare benefit scandal in which thousands of parents were wrongly treated as fraudsters. But with a general election taking place in just two months time, ministers will stay on in their present roles until then, acting in a caretaker capacity. Here’s an explainer of what it all means. So what happens in the next few days? On Tuesday, MPs will debate the government’s official response to the highly critical report... More >








NL government falls over benefit scandal

The Dutch government has resigned in the wake of the childcare benefit scandal after an official report said ministers, civil servants, parliament and even judges had a role in the affair, which left parents powerless to fight back when accused of fraud. The collapse of the four-party coalition had been widely expected by commentators, and had been given extra impetus by the decision of Labour party leader Lodewijk Asscher to resign on Thursday. Asscher was social affairs minister at the... More >



Childcare benefits: the victims speak

Kristie Rongen says she is a pitbull who bites and won’t let go. This 45-year-old from Lelystad is one of 20 families who have started a court case accusing five senior politicians of criminal negligence for their role in failing to prevent a childcare benefits scandal that has driven thousands to financial ruin. She believes and hopes that the repercussions mean that today the cabinet will fall. ‘What we parents want is that Rutte steps down and doesn’t come back,’... More >


Coalition may fall over benefits scandal

Ministers will decide today whether or not to pull the plug on the current coalition in the wake of the childcare benefit scandal, and many commentators now say that the government’s collapse is inevitable. The decision by Labour party leader Lodewijk Asscher to resign on Thursday has only added to the pressure on Mark Rutte and his team of ministers to stand down, insiders say. Asscher was social affairs minister at the time of the scandal, in which thousands of... More >



Asscher resigns to dismay of party

The decision by Lodewijk Asscher to renounce the Labour leadership because of his role in the childcare benefit scandal has been met with dismay by party members and support from others, broadcaster NOS reports. MP Lilianne Ploumen, currently deputy leader of the parliamentary party, said she had only heard about Asscher’s resignation on Thursday morning. ‘It is definitely a blow. I am shocked,’ she commented. Ploumen refused to be drawn about who might succeed Asscher as leader. Her name, that... More >