N-VA’s Plan to Launch Lists in Wallonia in 2024: Analysis and Reactions

2023-12-04 17:29:00

Bart De Wever created a surprise this weekend by announcing during an interview published on Saturday in HLN that he planned to launch lists in Wallonia in 2024. The president of the N-VA, better known for criticizing Wallonia than in an attempt to seduce her, explained that he wanted to bring the Confederalist narrative to his neighbors in the south of the country.

N-VA lists in Wallonia in 2024? “Paradoxical”, “too late” and “unbelievable”, says political scientist Dave Sinardet

Asked on Sunday about the feasibility of these lists, about the names who could constitute them, the president provided a vague answer. “I don’t think we will get many seats,” Bart De Wever conceded on VRT. However, this incursion could “liberate Wallonia from the PS”, he added, once again accusing the socialists of having placed the region among the worst performing in Europe.

The N-VA indeed enjoys a certain popularity in Wallonia. Translated into French, the nationalist president’s book “Over Woke” sold 3,000 copies. A quick survey on the DH website suggests that the party could find supporters in French-speaking Belgium. To the question “would you be ready to vote for the Flemish party?”, 52% of the 400 respondents answered “Yes”.

The federal deputy and former secretary of state “Theo Francken is very popular in Hainaut”, recognizes Jacqueline Galant (MR), Walloon deputy and former federal minister. “I was able to observe him when I organized a debate between him and my party president, Georges-Louis Bouchez,” continues the woman who is also mayor of Jurbise. “He is a personality that unites people around him. He has a speech that appeals to Wallonia.”

How Bart De Wever wants to establish the N-VA in Wallonia

Contacted, the latter confirms to us that he could have appeared on a Walloon list if he was not already taken elsewhere. “It’s impossible because I’m already drawing the list in Flemish Brabant. Otherwise: YES!”, the mayor of Lubbeek answers us on WhatsApp.

In the latest La Libre/RTBF poll “The choice of the Belgians”, Bart De Wever came in 17th place in the ranking of political figures that Walloons would like to see play a role.

However, these different popularity indicators do not seem to worry Walloon politicians too much.

For Jacqueline Galant, “a party cannot rely solely on one or two popular people”. Moreover, “the timing is very tight to put in place an electoral strategy knowing that there are only a few months left between December and June. However, this shows to what extent the MR is the only alternative to all these lefts.”

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“It’s one of Bart De Wever’s many trial balloons,” laughs Georges-Louis Bouchez, president of the MR.

André Frédéric (PS), president of the Walloon parliament, is even amused by these declarations. “I’m not worried at all. I don’t know if Bart De Wever had to find something to talk about, but it doesn’t seem very serious.”

“Bart De Wever no longer seems to know what to do to try to save his political project and make people talk about him,” says Germain Mugemangango, head of the PTB group in the Walloon parliament. “Whether in the North, Center or South of the country, we are ready to fight against “divide and rule” policies. Whether they come from the N-VA or other political forces. This is how in 2019, we fought the attempts of the PS and the N-VA to negotiate a project to divide justice or social security. We will continue to do it”

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