Cft chairman Raymond Gradus on Bonaire: “Tangible steps are necessary to improve financial management and governmental stability”

Kralendijk – During its visit to Bonaire on January 30th, the Board of financial supervision Bonaire, Sint Eustatius en Saba (Cft) requested the Executive Council and the Island Council to take the necessary steps in order to get the financial management in order. “The Board has been requesting attention for this issue for quite some time now, and it wants to see more progress now”, Cft chairman Raymond Gradus stated.

During its visit the Board spoke with the Lieutenant Governor, the Executive Council, the interim Kingdom Representative and the Island Council. In addition a work visit was paid to the Tourism Corporation Bonaire (TCB). TCB gave the Board extensive explanation on the master plan for the future of tourism on Bonaire, and the importance thereof for the economy.

The Board spoke in depth with the Finance Commissioner on the steps to be taken in order to improve the financial management and the challenges for the 2018 budget execution. The observations that form part of the approval letter on the 2018 budget of State Secretary of Interior Affairs and Kingdom Relations Raymond Knops were also discussed. Those observations were: to bring the financial management up to par, to fill up the crucial functions in government with qualified personnel, to take the necessary steps to ensure timely submittal of the annual accounts of the government entities and to intensify the control on the government entities. Profound deliberations were held on how to fill up the remaining crucial job openings. The Executive Council promised to send a letter on the state of affairs to the Cft.

The Board also discussed the accounting and execution of the 2017 budget. The Cft expects to dispose of the report on the fourth quarter shortly. The Board emphasizes that these reports are chiefly of importance for the Executive Council and the Island Council since it allows them to execute their executive and controlling tasks in a proper way.

The developments at a number of government companies are troublesome. The Board has requested special attention for this matter, as these developments already are, or in time may be of influence on the government budget. The Executive Council agreed to perform operational audits on the government companies. The timely submission of the annual accounts of the government companies and the execution of the code of good governance are of great importance, in order to maintain insight in the state of affairs and to be able to make adequate risk assessments.

Seeing the many changes in government since 2010, the Board has again put to the attention of the Executive Council and the Island Council that governmental stability is very important for the economy and for the community of Bonaire.