While the whole of the Netherlands was under the spell of the coronavirus, 50Plus experienced the biggest internal crisis since its establishment in 2009. Between the MPs and the party top, there was a booming argument about the preparations for the parliamentary elections. The wish of then party leader Henk Krol to put party chairman Geert Dales high on the list also caused a riot.
Dales left with banging doors. “50Plus has fallen into the hands of rule fetishists, incompetent job hunters and administrative garden gnomes,” wrote the former mayor of Leeuwarden in a statement. Krol, the face of the party, also left 50Plus. He has now joined MP Femke Merel van Kooten Arissen (ex -Animal Party) and Senator Henk Otten (ex-FvD) founded a new party.
Co-founder of 50Plus Jan Nagel (former party chairman, party leader and senator) was officially no longer in office as honorary chairman, but behind the scenes he continued to interfere with ‘his’ elderly party. Nagel was also deeply involved in the conflict of recent months.
After some hesitation, Nagel again presented herself as a candidate for the presidency. “The party is on the brink of collapse,” he said on Saturday after some help getting the microphone on his video link. “Now someone with a lot of experience is needed. I am the only candidate who has that. ”
The nestor was elected after two rounds of voting. Due to the corona crisis, the party had to meet digitally. That again was not without hassle. A number of members indicated that they had difficulty with digital voting. Despite that criticism, the election continued.
Remarkably, the digital meeting barely mentioned the crisis of recent months. “We could easily write an exciting book there, but we are not going to do that now. That book will come ”, the chairman said to the members. His last comment seems to be a slant towards Geert Dales. He is currently working on a book about the arguing at 50Plus.