H.E. Antonio Guterres
Secretary General of the United Nations 405 E
42nd St, New York, NY 10017
Date: April 11, 2023
Subject: Objection to the Netherlands’ appointment of Governor of island Bonaire, Mr. Rijna as Special Envoy to UN
With this letter we Bonaire Human Rights Organization (BHRO) and Nos Kier Bonier Bek Foundation (NKBB), object to the appointment as “Special Envoy” of the present Lieutenant Governor of the public entity Bonaire (a colonial representative of the Monarchy of the Netherlands), Mr. Edison Enrique Rijna. Mr. Rijna has been governor for the last nine years. He will retire and will start working for the Netherlands from April 18, 2023, in the top diplomatic position in the UN for Caribbean Netherlands for EU and UN funds. (https://english.rijksdienstcn.com/latest/news/2023/march/27/edison-rijna-appointed-special-envoy)
Kindly note that King Willem Alexander of the Netherlands brought him to the recent Water Conference at the UN (22-24 March) in his delegation alongside the elected Prime Ministers of Curacao, Aruba, and St Maarten, the semi-autonomous islands of the Kingdom trying to deceive the United Nations that Mr. Rijna is an democratic elected leader. He is not; he is the controversial Lieutenant Governor of Bonaire. This was yet another attempt to manipulate the UN about Bonaire. The governor is representing the King and the Dutch government who appointed him: he is not elected by and not representing the Bonaire people.
Mr. Rijna’s appointment at the UN by the Netherlands can be considered controversial, unethical, a breach of good governance, and of the practice of diplomats and the values of the United Nations. Mr. Rijna will be unable to represent the peoples of Bonaire, Sint Eustatius, and Saba and their interests due to a notorious track record of corruption and links to criminal acts as he was/remains under investigation of the Dutch RST (Investigation Collaboration Team) and the Public Prosecutor. It seems that Mr. Rijna will be used for international deception against its own Bonaire people’s rights to democracy and self-determination. Please see the list below to corroborate these incriminations.:
- In 2009, Mr. Rijna was one of the three board members of the Foundation Pro Directe Banden (Foundation Pro Direct Link) together with Mr. Evo Angelo Cicilia and Mr. Simon Dirk who were reported by the local and Dutch press to have received over half a million guilders from the Dutch political party CDA to corrupt the local Bonaire politicians and to bribe Bonerians participating in elections and a self-determination referendum.
- In 2019, as Governor Mr. Rijna breached and violated the criminal laws by causing an accident by driving under the influence of alcohol, destroying the property of citizens, driving away after this, and not notifying the property owner nor the police. Only after a day, on the advice of his close friends, to whom he confessed, he went to the police station.
- Also in 2019, Mr. Rijna went on temporary leave as governor as a suspect in the Caldera corruption investigation ordered by the Public Prosecutor. Mr. Rijna was interrogated by the Dutch RST (Investigation Collaboration Team) in Curacao.
- In 2022, Mr. Rijna was ordered suspension for two weeks following a motion by the island Council as an independent integrity investigation, and Follow The Money journalists implied Mr. Rijna as the main suspect of breach of integrity in the Chogogo and Sunset Beach case, a corruption case involving the illegitimate issue of permits and breaching applicable zoning laws. This case is still under investigation today.
- In 2014, Mr. Rijna abused his power as Lieutenant Governor in violation of our human rights, to stop a peaceful protest. Human Rights activist James Finies protested for 222 consecutive days for a referendum for the people of Bonaire when Mr. Rijna unlawfully ordered the police to stop the peaceful protest by removal by force, contravening the human right of freedom of expression.
- At beginning of 2015, Mr. Rijna as Lieutenant Governor and as such head of the police failed or did not follow up, helped to cover up, and did not order an investigation or prosecution of a paid attempt to assassinate Human Rights activist Mr. James Finies when he was protesting. The claims of a planned assassination attempt were substantiated with the names of the perpetrators involved exposed in the public media.
- In 2019, Mr. Rijna abused his power and unlawfully ordered the arrest of Human Rights activist James Finies for the distribution of an information newspaper according to his human right of freedom of expression. With the order to arrest Mr. Finies, Mr. Rijna went against his own written acknowledgment of Mr. James Finies’s notice of a passive action of awareness. Mr. Rijna cooperated with false and contradictory unilateral police declarations and denied Mr. James Finies the possibility to exercise his human right to a public trail.
This UN nomination as “Special Envoy” of Bonerian Lieutenant Governor Rijna is a deliberate action of the Netherlands to contravene BHRO and NKBB awareness missions of the last twelve months to relist Bonaire as a Non-Self-Governing-Territories on the list of the United Nations in the Caribbean region and Latin America and UN, exposing the Netherlands’ serious breach of the values of the United Nations by violations of articles 1, 55, 73 and 103 of the Charter of the United Nations and resolutions 742, 747, 945, 1514 and 1541 et al. that affirm the inalienable rights of the people of Bonaire to self-determination. It highlights the systematic encroachment of several of our Bonaire people’s international legal instruments: the United Nations Charter, the United Nations Decolonization Declaration, The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, the International Covenant on All Forms of Racial Discrimination, United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
We trust that this information will help shed light and help stop another historical Dutch move to cover up their continuous heinous acts against the people of Bonaire, as we denounce the motives of this nomination which is under Dutch government duress to maintain our people under colonial domination, depriving them from their unalienable human right to self-determination and decolonization, to be free and equal as every other human being.
With utmost trust in the Justice and Equity of your Honorable Guterres,
Mr. James Finies, President Nos Kier Boneiru Bek
Ms. Davika J. Bissessar, President of the Bonaire Human Rights Organization