The citizens’ movement Hart voor Zwijndrecht is taking legal action against the planned merger with Kruibeke and Beveren in two ways. An appeal is pending with the Council of State and the movement asks residents to file a complaint with the Domestic Administration Agency. Hart voor Zwijndrecht reported this on Monday.
At the end of October, a rotating majority in the Zwijndrecht municipal council decided that discussions for a merger with Beveren and Kruibeke could be started. That merger would be a “blind adventure” of CD&V and N-VA, citizen movement Hart voor Zwijndrecht has noted in the past.
The non-binding referendum in Zwijndrecht on the merger resulted in a rejection of the merger in September. Nearly 80 percent of the residents who showed up (40 percent) voted “no” in September when asked whether Zwijndrecht should merge with Beveren and Kruibeke.
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The procedure at the Council of State was started by several citizens, including three municipal councilors from Vooruit and Groen. “We also ask all residents of Burcht and Zwijndrecht to register on our website and file a collective complaint with the Domestic Administration Agency,” says Sabrina Van Broeck (Hart voor Zwijndrecht).
According to the citizens’ movement, the merger is undemocratic and residents will experience too many disadvantages as a result of the merger. “We know nothing about which services will be retained after the merger,” Van Broeck added. “We also don’t know what investments we can expect and whether our residents will still have a voice in the new municipality. We don’t even know the new name of the municipality yet.”
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