Candidate MP and intended prime ministerial candidate for the BoerCurgerBeweging Mona Keijzer criticizes Pieter Omtzigt’s plan for a business cabinet. Such a cabinet should include so-called ‘professional ministers’. ‘If it is only interesting that you know something about a certain subject down to the last decimal point, then ultimately you no longer need a cabinet. Then just put a few officials there,” Keijzer told BNR.
The leader of New Social Contract (NSC), Pieter Omtzigt, announced in Buitenhof on Sunday that he prefers a business cabinet with specialist ministers. If such a cabinet were to emerge, he would be prepared to become prime minister after all. Several party leaders have already criticized the plan, and Mona Keijzer is therefore not immediately praising it. “It depends on what he means by it,” says the number two of the BBB. ‘Of course you must always ensure that you have ministers with affinity and knowledge of the sector for which they will be responsible. But every now and then I also think to myself: gosh, what is this actually about?’
Keijzer emphasizes that ministers are politically appointed and, moreover, are supported by numerous expert civil servants. ‘It is especially important for you as a minister that you know where to go and that you can properly weigh the advice you receive. In order to ultimately make the decisions that you are convinced from your political perspective will help the Netherlands move forward. If it is only interesting that you know something about a certain subject down to the last decimal point, then ultimately you no longer need a cabinet. Then just put a few officials there.’
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Examples of specialist ministers that are often mentioned are Robbert Dijkgraaf and Ernst Kuipers, who at the time of their appointment were known as people at the top of their field. Keijzer: ‘But also realize that, as a specialist minister, you may be an expert in hospital care in your specialty, but what on earth do you know about elderly care? I find it much more interesting to ask Pieter Omtzigt what he ultimately wants in terms of content for all those different files.’
Omtzigt said today that it does not understand the controversy surrounding its plan. Moreover, he clarified, as far as he is concerned, these specialist ministers can be members of a political party.
The post first appeared on www.bnr.nl