The coordinator of the National Consortium for Aids (LCH) Rob van der Kolk did not even think the mask deal that Sywert van Lienden concluded with the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport (VWS) was necessary. The director of the AMC Amsterdam said on NPO Radio 1 during the program Oog op Morgen that the LCH had already arranged sufficient materials at that time.
The agreement between Van Lienden and the ministry came about when Van der Kolk and his team had already been working for twenty days. “We had already arranged everything. We had arranged flights, we had arranged mouth caps. I used to say: Sywert talks about it, we do it. And then he made that agreement with the ministry. As far as we are concerned, it was not necessary, but VWS wanted more certainty and therefore more mouth caps.” Van der Kolk says that VWS had come under pressure due to the continued criticism in the media, including from Van Lienden. “That definitely played a part.”
Van Lienden and his associates have come under fire for the deal, which netted them €20 million despite saying they were operating on a non-profit basis. According to Van der Kolk, Van Lienden spoke of mouth caps as “the new gold” and, because he walked around the LCH building with his business partners, he knew exactly what the maximum rate was per mouth cap. ,,We had a maximum of 2.50 euros, and I believe he will get 2.52.”
Good job done
On Sunday, Van Lienden was at Buitenhof to tell his story. There he said that “some people are cleaning their streets”. Van der Kolk says that he does not feel addressed. “We were not there on behalf of the care, we were the care. And we have done a very good job with a mandate from VWS. The first weekend we were busy we had already arranged mouth caps and they were already worn a few weeks later in the Netherlands, that’s good.” while we do a good job”.
According to the hospital director, Van Lienden also lied to him when they still worked in the same building and might work together. “He said he had signed a nondisclosure agreement, but he didn’t. Soon after, they were evicted from the building and the partnership was over. Some people are good, but not everyone”, concluded Van der Kolk.