VVD ignoring own financial transparency rules

It seems that the VVD is not living up to its own new rules on financial transparency. Last year the ruling party announced that it would publish all donations to local chapters that are above 4,500 euros. The VVD received at least a quarter of a million euros in such donations, but none of them are indicated in the annual report for 2014, NRC reports.

The VVD in Amsterdam received a donation of 192,839 euros from the Stichting Steunfonds - Foundation Support Fund in English - as well as a 10 thousand euro donation from technology company Nijkerk Holding, NRC discovered after inquiring at the VVD party office. Treasurer Bastiaan van der Giessen told NRC that the amount from Stichting Steunfonds consisted of payments by sympathizers who usually donate about one thousand euro per person.

The VVD in Rotterdam received 75 thousand euros from Stichting Rotterdamse Bedrijven - Foundation Rotterdam Companies in English. A spokesperson for the party office explained that the foundation has been dormant for years, and when it became active again, it was decided that the donation would be given to the Rotterdam branch of the VVD in an once off amount.

VVD departmetns in Utrecht, Noordwijk, Assen and Venlo also received donations of above 4,500 euros that are not mentioned in the report. The party office could not guarantee that these were the only donations to local chapters that were above 4,500 euros. The annual report contains a section named "miscellaneous income organs" in which more than 1.5 million euros is included. This term also seems to include donations to local chapters.