FVD concluded in its own investigation that no mistakes were made in the handling of messages about members of the youth branch JFVD who made racist, Nazi and homophobic statements.
A committee, consisting of Member of Parliament Ralf Dekker and Member of Parliament Wybren van Haga, sees “no reason for new or additional punitive measures against JFVD members” and makes seven recommendations “to prevent such cases from happening again in the future”.
The bomb then burst Het Parool a month ago it was revealed that racist texts, photos and videos were shared in JFVD app groups and that the party did not take action against it.
Whistleblowers who raised this in a letter to the JFVD board were even expelled. And a 23-year-old student who had spoken anti-Semitic with an “SS slogan” in the app group, became a coordinator in South Holland for JFVD and an employee of the Lower House faction.
Allegations are not denied by investigators
The Commission of Inquiry does not deny these events, but explains them differently. Of the nineteen signatories to the whistleblower’s letter, five have been expelled because, according to the party, they were “in bad faith”. FVD blamed members for contacting the media because of the events.
According to the committee, the 23-year-old student has been an “unfortunate mistake of personality”. Not he, but someone else with the same first name was suspended by FVD. When this became clear, the student was “relieved of his duties”.
Furthermore, a total of 227,718 posts in official JFVD app groups were examined using a list of keywords. This showed that nineteen messages are “potentially cross-border”. According to the researchers, these are “hurtful jokes and provocations”.
Although only “problematic messages” are mentioned, a number of people have still been expelled. Others would have already canceled their membership. What is in the messages is not mentioned.
“The researchers conclude from this that virtually no cross-border messages were sent in the official JFVD app groups,” the research report says.
Party regularly associated with racism
Last spring, JFVD was also discredited for anti-Semitic and racist statements. HP / The Time then wrote about those messages. It was the reactions of FVD leader Thierry Baudet and JFVD chairman and candidate MP Freek Jansen that caused a lot of commotion.
Both Jansen and Baudet initially refused to act and condemn the reports. This followed a series of events in which Baudet was increasingly associated with racist and Nazi ideas and statements.
Baudet would recently have said during a dinner with candidate MPs that JFVD members who put the Holocaust into perspective in an app group are not stupid, but have “a very high IQ”. “That’s why they say these things.”
Many prominent people have left the party
For many party leaders this was the last straw and they left FVD. A public battle for leadership ensued, in which Baudet ultimately won the prize, but was left with a battered party.
The Senate faction, the largest in the senate after last year’s elections, fell from twelve to two seats after all the arguments, four of the top ten candidate MPs are still left and the Brussels fraction has split off.
In addition to parliament, FVD is represented in the municipality of Amsterdam, the provinces and the European Union, but almost all fractions have now been considerably thinned out.