Dhani Hoekstra moved to Ten Post in Groningen around 10 years ago
Translated by Thomas Ansell
From Thursday morning, Dhani Hoekstra, who moved to Ten Post in Groningen from Leeuwarden around 10 years ago, will go on hunger strike. His move is to draw attention to problems that home-owners face thanks to earthquakes caused by gas-extraction in Groningen and Friesland. Since moving to Ten Post for the lifestyle, Hoekstra’s house has been seriously damaged, and perhaps worse both he and many other say they feel abandoned by authorities.
“I hope that we, not only for us but for other Groninger residents, can inspire the national government to do something”, said Hoekstra, as reported by the Omrop Fryslân. “Eventually, the goals is to help people here in Groningen. That’s more specifically people who sit in a ‘forgotten corner’ and feel like they are between a rock and hard place. I’m talking about a few hundred families; harrowing cases”, Hoekstra added.
Earthquakes are now in control of both Hoekstra and his wife, “when I lived in Leeuwarden, naturally I saw lots of information about the earthquakes in Groningen, but now I’m sitting in the middle of them. When I first came to live here, all you could see was a small crack. But now, we don’t even bother counting anymore”, he said. Hoekstra says that the monitoring device they have has recorded around 100 quakes, he says.
Hoekstra and his wife are not both financially and psychologically bonded to the area, and see no other option than staying and trying to alert people to their plight. “If we sold the house, we wouldn’t get any more than the ground-value”, he said. The hunger-strike is very much a last resort to try and draw attention.
Minister Eric Wiebes, who is responsible for all of the failings around the North’s man-made earthquake problems, has not reacted to Hoekstra’s hunger-strike. “We have had contact with the gemeente, and the mayor is coming in the morning to speak to us. The gemeente itself is acting, but that is precisely what I am protesting: the problems can’t be solved by Groninger people, Minister Wiebes must also cross the bridge”, said Hoekstra.
Hoekstra is currently living off water and a small amount of beet-juice. He has also been visited by a doctor, who gave him a check up. “It is possible that there will be a solution tomorrow”, he said, “but I don’t expect so.”
Image via Piqlels. Rights Free.