Monday, 5 August 2013
Suriname: Opposition VHP expresses displeasure at government's 'mismanagement'
Opposition VHP expresses its displeasure at government's 'mismanagement' after the last minor cabinet reshuffle.
As was to be expected after the last government reshuffle (see Suriname Politics & Security – 22.07.13) the opposition fiercely criticised government policy. For the Progressive Reform Party (VHP), the largest opposition party, the dismissal of the tenth minister in three years was a reason to respond through its chairman, Chandrikapersad Santokhi.
“Sending ministers home and replacing them with others is not a solution. Corruption must be fought. The security situation needs to be improved. And most of all: the government must render account,” said Santokhi. “Changes cannot be achieved with a switch of ministers but only with good governance. And this is exactly what is lacking with this government. The VHP will offer an alternative to the voter, because in three years the government has not lived up to the many promises they made."
Analysis: It is indeed true that the objectives in the crowded "Things to do" list, presented by the president when he took office, are still far from having been achieved. But what is clear is that the current government is doing considerably more than the previous administration of former president Ronald Venetiaan, in which the VHP held an important position. Santokhi - who was Minister of Justice and Police in the previous cabinet - described crime as a serious matter. But, according to international statistics, Suriname is one of the safest countries in the Caribbean. The criticism can be seen as preparing the party for the elections of 2015. According to current polls, Bouterse's NDP will be the largest party. The VHP, now in opposition with the shrunken NPS former coalition partner, is according to reports expected to leave its alliance and form a government with the NDP in two years' time.
For more news and expert analysis about Suriname, please see Suriname Politics & Security.
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