Nearly 150 D66 members demand explanation over hidden MeToo case
Nearly 150 D66 demanded that party leader Sigrid Kaag and the party board explain their role in concealing the transgressive behavior of a prominent party member. They want that explanation within a week, they said in an open letter. They also demanded a party meeting within three weeks where the board must "be held accountable."
The case revolves around Frans van Drimmelen, a lobbyist, party strategist, and former chairman of the party's talent committee. The Volkskrant revealed on Saturday that a confidential report showed that he stalked, threatened, and blackmailed a female colleague. The police had a "warning talk" with him, the report showed.
The signatories of the letter said they were dismayed to learn the report's details in a Volkskrant article. They pointed to Kaag's response that there is no room for transgressive behavior in the D66. "Yet there are many questions and uncertainties about the position of victims and the party leadership's actions in combatting and preventing transgressive behavior within the D66," they wrote.
"In order to regain peace and the confidence of the members, we call on the board to provide clarity in the short term about what happened and how the party acted," they wrote. "We are convinced that only when the members are fully informed about what actually happened can we work towards a party that is safe for everyone."
Daphnie Ploegstra, the confidential advisor of the D66's youth division Jonge Democraten, initiated the letter. Another 144 D66 members signed it, though not yet any nationally known party members.