Press Release Unkobon
By invoking the WOB-BES (Government Disclosure Act), Unkobon has requested information from the Executive Council in order to gain insight into the short and (medium) long term plans for tackling the bad roads.
In 2018 and 2019 Unkobon and Henri Verhoef (initiator of the public action 2017) had several consultations and consultations with the responsible member of the Executive Council James Kroon on this matter. It was agreed that Unkobon and OLB would work together - also towards Dutch policymakers - to realize the common goal (improvement of roads on Bonaire). Unkobon has therefore made a strong commitment in that respect and has taken various actions and conducted negotiations, among others with Dutch administrators.
And all efforts have been successful. In the meantime, commitments have been made in the Administrative Agreement about extra funds that will be made available by the Dutch government for the improvement of the roads on Bonaire. In August 2019, the Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment transferred no less than 8.5 million euro to OLB for the construction and improvement of the roads (source; letter from the State Secretary to the Senate, October 19, 2019, reference 2019-0000530301). With this money a good start can be made with a large-scale approach to the road network.
It has repeatedly been agreed with the councilor that it is important to exchange relevant information and share the progress of actions. Months ago, Unkobon was promised to provide insight into the planning / the ‘wegenplan’. Despite several mails and phone calls, Unkobon did not succeed in getting an appointment.
Providing information from the side of OLB has been limited to press releases with the message "a start has been made with the roads around the schools" and the naming of a limited number of streets that will be taken care of afterwards. The condition of the roads is disastrous for the traffic safety of residents and tourists. This leads not only to a lot of annoyance, but also to material damage and costly repairs to vehicles. It also causes health damage due to unnecessary dust disturbance on the island.
Planning information on the handling of the roads is important for all inhabitants of Bonaire. Transparency for the population what is going to happen to the roads is lacking. Will it be patchwork again or thorough improvement? Which roads will be tackled? And when? What is the exact planning? The Executive Council - which has promised administrative transparency on several occasions - falls seriously short here.
Unkobon and Verhoef ask the Executive Council what will happen with the promised approach / improvement of the roads on the island. With the WOB request, Unkobon now wants to encourage the Executive Council to achieve the desired clarity and administrative transparency.