Posted on | maart 23, 2012 | No Comments
The Surinamese government has proposed Amnesty for the crimes committed against humanity between 1982-1987. The proposal was prompted by the statements made by the witness Ruben Rozendaal, one of the so called Group of 16 that overthrew the Arron government in 1980. The call for amnesty is not the first attempt by the presidency to make the past go away.
Desi Bouterse tried to seek forgiveness through religion, becoming a devout, a devoutness not grounded in piety, but in the idea that prayer would bring absolution from sin. When the trial came the lawyers did their utmost to delay and defray the trial. At first the tactic of the defense team seemed to work; it helped mr. Bouterse to enter the 2010 electoral campaign without a worry in the world, making it possible for Mr. Bouterse to become president.
In vijf maanden verdiende Van Haperen, meldt Opgelicht, 60 duizend euro, maar bracht hij het toegezegde juridisch en financieel advies nooit uit. Als de gedupeerden hun geld terugvragen, ontvlucht Van Haperen zijn huis. De 70-jarige bejaarde Mimi Snoek, die haar spaargeld van 50 duizend euro wil beleggen en aan wie door Van Haperen een hoog rendement wordt beloofd, is aan de Costa Blanca ook één van zijn slachtoffers. Ze wacht echter nog steeds op haar geld, blijkt uit de uitzending. Nu duikt dezelfde Van Haperen (60) op in Paramaribo en is hij er in zijn eentje verantwoordelijk voor, dat het 8 decemberproces tegen Bouterse is geschorst. Want de man, die tijdens de decembermoorden in 1982 (toen 15 tegenstanders van het militaire regime werden geëxecuteerd) werkzaam zou zijn geweest voor de Nederlandse militaire inlichtingendienst, wil nu dolgraag een boekje opendoen over de Haagse steun voor de vele coupplannen tegen Bouterse cum suïs.
This attempt to influence the course of trial with this witness did not work out as the defense had hoped, as a matter of fact, the testimony by Mr van Haperen was vague and not helping the defendant. But than the unthinkable happened when a witness came forward testifying that he was coerced by the president to say that Mr. Bouterse had not been present in the Fort Zeelandia during the killings. Mr Rozenblad it can be argued, is testifying out of malice, out of spite because Mr Bouterse did not make due on his promises. Putting Mr Rozendaal’s testimony in the light of comeuppance and retribution, uncloaks a culture of cover-up and blackmail. Indeed Mr Bouterse could not keep Ruben Rozendaal for ransom unless he delivered and forked over some good cash and other goodies promised. Mr Rozendaal is now sick and lives off of a small pension, and has nothing more to loose, or so he says. He is now ready to spill all the beans, because he has been misled. During his first trial Mr Rozendaal in 2010 seemed to be suffering from amnesia:
Ex-legerofficier Ruben Rozendaal lijdt ook aan kennelijk geheugenverlies. Net als andere getuigen en verdachten weet hij weinig meer van de gebeurtenissen rond 8 december 1982. Voor hem was een aparte dag vrijgemaakt voor verhoor als getuige en als verdachte. (source: http://www.waterkant.net/suriname/2010/05/09/surinaamse-ex-militair-rozendaal-weet-weinig-meer/)
The latest testimony by Ruben Rozendaal are damming for Mr Bouterse, placing him smack in the middle of the murder scene. “He Mr Bouterse was there”, (“hij was daar”).
The new testimony gave rise to frenzy, a panicky Mr Bouterse whose damage control ensued the beseeching of parliament to vote for an Amnesty law, which will exempt all crimes committed against humanity in Suriname during the 1980s and 1990s from punishment.
The public outcries,reverberate the rising unease and concern with the incumbency, whose actions feel like a big “blast from the past”. The cover-ups, the secret para military force headed by Mr Bouterse son, massive corruption and cronyism. But the concerned citizens are in the minority, the urban middle classes and Surinamese in Diaspora. The docility of the ordinary citizens ,a category still waiting for a miracle cure, for a quick fix, free cash from the man they voted for in May 2010.
Today, more that 500 people signed the petition to protest the upcoming Amnesty law: http://www.petities24.com
Noteworthy is that many of the signers, signed the petition anonymously, probably out of fear for repercussions by the government. The fact that many people fear the government is telltale sign that democracy is indeed in jeopardy, but also that a culture of fear is spreading like wildfire over the Surinamese society today. If the Amnesty enters into effect, the sense of impunity will help to break down the last shreds of democracy, and Suriname will then be on the road of becoming an authoritarian regime of proportions surpassing that of the 1980s.
AUTHOR: Natascha Adama
E-MAIL: nataliapestova23 [@] yahoo.com