ROTTERDAM - Rotterdam will for the first time in nearly fifty years a mayor who is not a member of the Labor Party. Ivo Opstelten (VVD) moves from Utrecht to Rotterdam, Report Radio Rijnmond and the Algemeen Dagblad based on different sources.

"It was sought after pepper to a man of the people", analyzes Radio Rijnmond. "Opstelten also had a relationship with Rotterdam. He comes from here and also sits on the harbor board. "

Utrecht is reacted with disappointment at the departure of Opstelten. The mayor is popular among the residents of the city. Even opposition leader Henk Westbroek (livable Utrecht) is very pleased Opstelten. "A nice, knowledgeable and likable man ", he said on Radio Rijnmond.

"I tackled him hard as opposition leader, but he was always good abilities ", says councilor / singer. “Moreover, he was about the only one in the council who also had humor. He sometimes jokes”.

"He can finally FC Utrecht scarf for exchange of Feyenoord", Westbroek says further.

”He does not have to fib and he can wear a scarf where he really stands behind. Opstelten because Feyenoord is a real man”.

(Henk Westbroek, Radio Rijnmond, 11-01-1999)

spirited battle

The appointment of Opstelten was not without a struggle. There were two candidates in the race for the most important position on the. In addition to Opstelten rein welschen was, the mayor of Eindhoven, pushed forward.

Last month was the Queen's Commissioner Leemhuis-Stout also a noteworthy opinion of the confidential committee pushed under her nose. Since three names figured on: On stilts, Welschen and the director of the Court, Saskia Stuiveling (PvdA). But there was no clear preference for.

sat on the committee six (of nine) Representatives of the Rotterdam parties. Supported them four behind Opstelten and two behind Welschen. But in terms of seats, there was a preference for Welchers (23-19).

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Leemhuis-Stout as a short time later issue its advice to Minister Pepper, which could then appoint his own successor (Pepper was until his appointment as Minister mayor of Rotterdam).

Until this week there are talks between Pepper and candidates and the VVD party in parliament would have fought hard for position Opstelten of Rotterdam. The VVD is the second party in the country, but would be under-represented in major cities, so the idea.

Both Opstelten as Welschen have not yet responded to the news.

Hoe ging het verder?

It still took more than a week before too Peppers with the redeeming word came. Leemhuis-Stout had advised to choose Opstelten, even though a majority of the council supported the appointment of Welchers.

During interviews with both candidates would have become clear that Opstelten saw a move to Rotterdam over his fellow Brabant. Therefore chose Pepper Opstelten above his party Welchers.

Opstelten of Rotterdam grew into a fairly popular mayor, with the image of a crime-fighter (thanks to the attitude of Liveable Rotterdam, for years the largest party in the city).

That image came to him for good, when he served as Minister of Security and Justice went to work. But there came the first scratches on his escutcheon. The infamous' receipts scandal eventually cost him the head.


Reformatorisch Dagblad – 02-12-1998 – Rotterdam spread over mayor

TVNZ – 16-12-1998 – Opstelten and Welschen top candidates

Reformatorisch Dagblad – 18-12-1998 – Race between red and blue

Radio Rijnmond – 11-01-1999 – Rijnmond Now (Erik Post)

Volkskrant – 21-01-1999 – On stilts (VVD) is new mayor of Rotterdam

Wikipedia – Ivo Opstelten

Author: Dave Datema

published: 11-01-1999

story number: 48

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