The Ministry of Home Affairs is establishing a new support team to assist and advise local politicians faced with threats. A new survey among political officials in municipalities, provinces and water boards revealed that 29 percent of them were targeted with aggression or violence last year, compared to 27 percent in 2016, RTL Nieuws reports.
On Monday Minister Kasja Ollongren of Home Affairs will present a new plan to fight corruption in local politics. The plan includes a mandatory 'integrity test' for all prospective aldermen. They will also have to hand in a Declaration of Good Behavior before they can take office, AD reports.
Local factions of political parties make almost no effort to screen new candidates before letting them run in municipal elections, according to criminology professor Emile Kolthoff. He therefore calls for security service AIVD or a a special police service to take over this duty and properly screen candidate municipal councilors before they are sworn into the council, Trouw reports.
The PVV hopes to take many voters from local parties in the municipal elections in 2018, leader Geert Wilders said in a interview with AD over the weekend. Many local parties aren't too worried about this strategy, Trouw reports after speaking to them.'
The PVV shares views with many local parties, Wilders said in the interview. "We already hear of people who want to change", he said. So far the far-right party was only active in The Hague and Almere. "But people want more. I notice that there is a need."
Women are gaining ground in the male-dominated political playing field in the Netherlands. Of all municipal council members who were elected in March, 28.3 percent are women, according to ProDemos, who published the figures in a report on Thursday.