Flemish Government welcomes new minister after Beke resignation

The Flemish Government welcomes a new minister. Jo Brouns (CD&V) is now minister of Work, Economy and Agriculture. Brouns takes over the responsibilities of vice-minister-President and party colleague Hilde Crevits, who becomes minister of Welfare. 

The reshuffle comes after Wouter Beke announced his resignation as minister of Welfare last Friday. He did not do so because of the ever escalating discussions about his position, but because of an opinion poll that indicated that his party CD&V would become the smallest in Flanders. A historic low. Earlier last week, CD&V party chairman Joachim Coens resigned for the same reason. 

Party Council

Monday evening, Joachim Coens presented the name of Jo Brouns to the 150 members of the party council. The nomination of the 47-year-old mayor from a town in Limburg, the province where resigning minister Wouter Beke also comes from, was finally approved by 87 percent of the members. Now it is up to the Flemish members of parliament to ratify the CD&V party council's recommendation. On Wednesday, Brouns can then take the oath as minister. 

Brouns will become minister of Work, Economy and Agriculture, competences that until now fell under the responsibility of Hilde Crevits. She will take care of the competence for Welfare.

Last week, candidate party chairman Sammy Mahdi made it clear that Welfare is an important competence for CD&V. ​ Among other things, he wants to revise the agreement on the Flemish cuts in child allowances.

"We are and will remain the care party of Flanders", Mahdi said. 

With Brouns, farmers can also count on a further follow-up to the difficult and unnerving nitrogen dossier, which has caused a great deal of commotion in recent months. The new minister of Agriculture states that the nitrogen agreement must be amended if the public enquiry into the scheme shows that this is necessary. It illustrates that Brouns will do everything in his power to dispel the unrest among the national CD&V departments, which is necessary. Many local CD&V departments are considering breaking ties with the national party in 2024, because they do not agree with the decisions of the party leadership. 

Way to renewal

The resignation of Wouter Beke may pave the way for renewal. In the past two years, Beke has been in the news because of his approach to the corona crisis in the healthcare sector. A few months ago, he came under fire again after a toddler died in a Flemish nursery that had already been discredited before.The changes at CD&V should put the party back on the political map. Whether it will actually succeed, remains to be seen in the coming months. 



© BELGA PHOTO Nicolas Maeterlinck - CD&V chairman Joachim Coens, CD&V's Jo Brouns, Flemish Minister for Youth, Media and Brussels Affairs Benjamin Dalle and Flemish Minister of Employment, Economy, Social Economy and agriculture Hilde Crevits talk to the press after a party council of Flemish christian democrat party CD&V on the succession of Flemish Minister Beke, in Brussels, Monday 16 May 2022.

Get updates in your mailbox

By clicking "Subscribe" I confirm I have read and agree to the Privacy Policy.

About belganewsagency.eu

Belga News Agency delivers dependable, rapid and high-quality information 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, from Belgium and abroad to all Belgian media. The information covers all sectors, from politics, economics and finance to social affairs, sports and culture, not to mention entertainment and lifestyle.

Every day, our journalists and press photographers produce hundreds of photos and news stories, dozens of online information items, plus audio and video bulletins, all in both national languages. Since the end of March 2022 English has been added as a language.

For public institutions, businesses and various organisations that need reliable information, Belga News Agency also offers a comprehensive range of corporate services to meet all their communication needs.


Arduinkaai 29 1000 Brussels