Justice Min. not to return as parliamentarian after elections

Ard van der Steur (Photo: Rijksoverheid.nl/Wikimedia Commons)Ard van der Steur (Photo: Rijksoverheid.nl/Wikimedia Commons)

Ard van der Steur will not be returning as a parliamentarian for the VVD after the elections in March next year. He is not on the VVD election list, BNR reports.

The current Minister of Security and Justice said that he carefully considered the matter carefully over the summer and decided that he will not make himself available. The main reason for that is that he would not be allowed to be a spokesperson for Security and Justice in the upcoming term. "But that is a spokesmanship that I as parliamentarian did for five years with a lot of enthusiasm and passion." he said to the broadcaster. He would not comment on whether or not he wants to be a minister again.

Van der Steur succeeded Ivo Opstelten in March 2015, after Opstelten resigned in the whole Teeven-deal affair. Van der Steur had a difficult term as minister so far, facing the Tweede Kamer, the lower house of parliament, in disrepute a number of times. The biggest debate he survived was on how the Ministry of Security and Justice handled terror suspect Ibrahim El Bakraoui, who later became a suicide bomber in terrorist attacks in Brussels.

Before that also had to explain his actions around MH17 pathologist George Maat and staged photographs of murderer Volkert van der Graaf. His role in the Teeven deal also led to parliamentary questions.