The party Groen deliberately and repeatedly spread erroneous information on Value Trading
The Antwerp branch of the Groen political party has been deliberately spreading erroneous information about Value Trading in recent weeks. Via a flyer distributed in the neighborhood around our company, Groen called for an objection against the extension of our environmental permit. It stated that Value Trading processes heavy metals including mercury, arsenic and lead. This is manifestly not correct. Value Trading only processes precious metals such as gold and silver, which do not release these substances. Extraordinary in this regard: the party distributed the same flyer in December 2021, which it withdrew after acknowledging that it contained erroneous information. 10 months later, the party went wrong again, dismissing this in the media as “an oversight”… After contact between Value Trading and Groen asking them to rectify this, the political party again acknowledged its mistake. Green then distributed a new flyer that unfortunately still contains erroneous information about our company that it does not want to correct.
Using false information, the political party repeatedly tries to influence local residents and public opinion and prevent our company from getting an extension of its environmental permit. We therefore wonder aloud how it is possible for a political party to continue to deliberately harm a company based on information it acknowledges is false.
We have been pleading for months for a serene dialogue based on facts and not opinions, but have been thwarted in this every time. We are therefore now asking for the court’s intervention to stop this erroneous reporting. Green responds that this is a form of harassment and that citizens have the right to express their opinions. We wonder whether deliberately spreading misinformation is also part of a political party’s right to free speech and sound governance. We leave that judgment to the court. What matters to us is the principle: we only ask that the flow of disinformation about our company stops, demanding a symbolic compensation of 1 euro.
The facts at a glance
All emission measurements taken every three months by the independent agency SGS show that our company does not exceed environmental standards in any area. The company poses no health risk to local residents. These measurement results can be consulted by anyone. Yet there is a feeling among local residents that Value Trading poses a threat to the environment. This feeling is fuelled by erroneous information being disseminated. The information that Green redistributed only fuels that feeling.