Mayor survives debate on unrest in Zaandam neighborhood

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Zaanstad Mayor Geke Faber survived a vote of no confidence during a debate on Thursday night about the unrest in the Zaandam neighborhood Poelenburg, The vast majority of the city council voted against deposing Faber, only DZ and POV voted in favor, ANP reports.

Both the DZ and POV feel the mayor failed in addressing the unrest in Poelenburg, which has been in the news since a group of young people threatened a Hart van Nederland news crew last week. They also think that Faber should have publicly come up for DZ leader Juliette Rot after she was harassed by vlogger Ismail Igun.

At the initiative of GroenLinks, the city council ordered the mayor and aldermen to work with all involved in the neighborhood and come up with a plan on how to address the problems.

After the debate, Faber told the news wire that she was always confident that there would be a good outcome. According to her, the debate ensured "that the Poelenburg neighborhood, with its complex social problems, is again fully in the picture with everyone." In the coming days structural solutions will be sought.

The Mayor also said that she deliberately did not come up for Rot in the media. "Of course I also think: Hands off our councilors, you should always be able to carry the debate openly. But if you say something like that in a threatening situation, you have to wonder if you're not making the threat greater. I made this consideration." According to Faber, Rot was given extra security after the incident.