Since 2020, the nine ministers of the Flemish government have covered 1 325 379 kilometers with their service cars. That’s the equivalent of driving around the earth 33 times.
Zuhal Demir (N-VA), Minister for the Environment, who lives in the remote province of Limburg, beats them all with 308 840 km on the counter. In 2022 alone, she covered more than 120 000 km (121 127 km, to be specific). She’s also the only one who never spends the night in Brussels.
Remarkable is that Minister Bart Somers, who drives an electric car, hardly had 60 000 on the odometer. Minister-President Jan Jambon announced that when leasing contracts end, all ministers will drive electric.
Fortunately, none of the excellencies still drives a so-called ‘polluting’ (diesel) car. However, only two ministers – Bart Somers (Open Vld) and Benjamin Dalle (CD&V) – drive an electric car; all the others have plug-in hybrids.
Still, they’re forcing citizens to give up their polluting cars and opt for electric driving. Even Mobility Minister Lydia Peeters (Open Vld), who wants all cars to be electric as of 2029, did not make the fully green switch yet, as she also lives in a far corner of the country, in Limburg.
A hypocritical attitude, according to Flemish Member of Parliament Bart Claes (Vlaams Belang), to push people to emission-free transport and not setting a good example themselves.
A possible explanation, according to Prime Minister Jan Jambon (N-VA), is that his ministers indicate that most of their official trips within Brussels are made by e-bike, e-scooter, public transport, or even on foot.
“Today, all ministers use a hybrid or electric vehicle, but as soon as those lease contracts expire, they will, of course, be switched to electric,” Jan Jambon explained. So, according to the Prime Minister, all service cars will be fully electric long before the sale of combustion engine cars will be banned (in 2029).
Nine Flemish ministers
The nine ministers of the Flemish government are Jo Brouns (CD&V), Hilde Crevits (CD&V), Benjamin Dalle (CD&V), Zuhal Demir (N-VA), Matthias Diependaele (N-VA), Jan Jambon (N-VA), Lydia Peeters (Open Vld), Bart Somers (Open Vld), Ben Weyts (N-VA).
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