RDA: Are you hallucinating?

Aruba was treated to a press conference yesterday with RDA movers & shakers Eman, Arends & Oduber Inc.

All three looked like they were forced to eat sludge, their body language screamed they did not want to be there, and their flat tone of voice admitted they hated to be news bearers.


Because at the heart of their message lies an untruth, propagated by the former AVP government and by the current MEP/POR/RED government, that we will one day have a high-functioning refinery and that we will have money for AZV, education and infrastructure, on the wings of the money-machine.

And that is a LIE.

That is intentionally giving people false hope.

Because, the rusty graveyard we saw in the pictures could never be revived, and dismantling is inevitable. In fact, RDA has been flaking and crumbling, practically dismantling itself, as we speak.

You have 18 potential buyers, you said, for that rust bucket? How can your lips even formulate such a fabrication?  We will be better served if you create a huge solar or wind park in the area, for energy provisions, including cars.  

And of course Curacao has a working refinery, stocked with Arubans, ready to service anyone with refining needs in the area.

Judge for yourself: You have two islands. Right next to each other. One has a refinery that works, and one has a pile of rust and hasn’t worked for many years. Both in the Dutch Kingdom. Both under Dutch law. Which one would you go for?

True, if we pour substantial amounts of money into the dangerously leaking tanks, and the rotting finger pier, the Wickland Oil portion of the refinery, maybe 50 or 100 million, we could make some money off the terminal, but with oil prices plunging, the margins are small, there is little money to be made, perhaps enough to pay the enormous salaries at RDA, TDEA and LalaGaga, all newly registered companies, which by the way, did not announce any pay cuts.

So they lied. And it was visibly hard on them. Standing there, mouthing the words, like a bad movie script. They want to give us hope, elections are coming, they want us to wear our pink glasses, and feel good about the future.

I was so sad. I really felt such a huge sense of loss looking at the images of the executives and their shattered refinery dreams – which benefitted from ZERO maintenance for ten years.

This one is definitely on the two Magic Mikes, M&M who screwed us over. They should never have made a deal with crooks and a country with one foot in the coffin and the other on a banana peel, and you already know who always says that. Since they were allowed to play with our money, they clearly did not care.

In the real world we learn not to do business with crooks – and these guys went to prison in front of their eyes!! We also learn in business not to become dependent on a Mafioso partner, like Venezuela, that is clearly imploding, the writing was on the wall in 2016, when the cockamamie agreements were signed.

Then, Eman openly threw Alvin Koolman, former RDA director, and Richard Arends, former CFO, now a member of Parliament, under the bus stating that the forensic analysis of their reign pinned 21 million florins on frivolous spending, parties, political friends and subsidies.

So, you have forensic report and you do nothing with it???

(They also have a forensic report on the hospital, with millions wasted fraudulently, also buried in a drawer.)

And BTW, besides depressive low energy speakers, the graphics they presented were the pits. Just terrible.

And guess who Richard Eman named as board member of RDA, beside Junior Croes, and MinPres? Right, Otmar Oduber occupies a seat. And we were operating under the illusion that he is retired.      

Everything about that press conference and the mothballed rust bucket was pathetic. And we should be willing to put it behind us and accept the hurt.  

With one exception: M&M let Valero off the hook for the environmental cleaning, and that was a crime against humanity.

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April 08, 2020
Rona Coster