Compensation for victims of childcare benefits scandal can take a long time: Van Huffelen
It may “take a very long time” before all parents who were victims in the childcare benefits scandal are compensated, caretaker State Secretary of Finance Alexandra van Huffelen said in an interview with Nieuwsuur.
A lot needs to happen to ensure that parents are compensated quicker, according to the state secretary. She pointed out that parents are still reporting that they were targeted and the Tax Authorities have been taking longer than previously.
It has now been established that more than 20 thousand parents are entitled to compensation. Many of them are still struggling with debt or other problems due to the childcare benefit scandal. Nearly 50 thousand people have reported to the Tax Authorities as victims.
During the interview with Nieuwsuur, Van Huffelen did not reveal much about the explosive ‘Palmen’ memo which was in the news again last week. The piece was written by a top civil servant and lawyer Sandra Palmen in which she already warned in 2017 about “reproachable” action taken by the Tax Authorities.
A report from the PwC showed that 24 officials were aware of the document at the time. Two of the officials lied about their knowledge about the secret memo.
The accountancy firm PwC investigated the disappearance of the memo but did not say why the memo never reached the official and political top.
The Secretary of State said everything had been done to obtain information. The investigation has been “very thorough”, according to the state secretary.
A senior Finance Officer refused to cooperate in an interview with the PwC. Van Huffelen said that is “a pity” but it is up to the person herself whether or not she wants to fully cooperate in the investigation.
In the childcare benefits scandal, thousands of parents were falsely accused of being fraudsters, based on their ethnicity and had to repay their child benefits. The affair brought the Rutte III Cabinet to collapse in December 2020.
Reporting by ANP and NL Times.