This morning Alabama Governor Bob Riley called for a boycott on Aruba in response for the lack of a serious investigation by Aruban officials in the Natalee Holloway investigation. Governor Riley also asked for better communication and cooperation with the Twitty and Holloway family in dealing with the investigation. Gov. Riley also said that he would ask the 49 other United States Governors to join him in the boycott against Aruba.
Alabama Gov. Bob Riley called for a travel boycott of Aruba on Tuesday until authorities on the Dutch Caribbean island cooperate more fully with the family of a Mountain Brook teenager who has been missing since a graduation trip in May.
Her mother, Beth Holloway-Twitty, joined Riley at the Alabama Capitol for the boycott announcement.
During the press conference at the Capitol Building, Governor Riley stated the following:
“We’ve been talking about this for the past two or three months,” said Riley. “We’ve been going through this for months, and all these people have asked is for the Aruban government to be open, to be candid, to explain to them (the Holloway family) and allow them to see interrogations that have gone on. To allow them to have the FBI be a part of that investigation. They have asked for the investigation team to be removed and I believe that is a reasonable request, based on everything we know up until this point.”
Governor Riley during his press conference reminded everyone that he could not legally prevent people from traveling to Aruba, he was asking fellow citizens to support the Holloway/Twitty family so that they may get a just and proper resolution to the disappearance of their daughter, Natalee Holloway.
The bottom line: The governor wants the people of Alabama to step up and support the Holloway family until there is some type of resolution in the case of missing teen Natalee Holloway. By stepping up, the governor wants people to stay away from Aruba.
While Riley says legally the government cannot force people to boycott travel to the island, he plans to not only ask Alabamians to stay away from aruba, but he’ll also ask the governors of the 49 other states to take the same action.
The Alabama Legislature had earlier passed a bill asking for a boycott during the summer; however, the family had shied away from the proposal as the investigation went on for their missing daughter. Recent events and what appeared to be a total breakdown in communication and cooperation toward the end of Dave Holloway’s last visit to Aruba, after he left and during Beth Twitty’s last brief visit.
With the recent lack of cooperation in helping Texas Equusearch get more high tech equipment and the families perceived perception in the direction the ALE was leading the case it probably did not come as a surprise to many that this day unfortunate as it is finally arrived. When speaking with Dave Holloway he said, “everyone has their limit to what their patience can handle, I reached mine as well.” The Alabama Governor pretty much summed up the frustration of the family and many.
“There are no other alternatives to get Aruban authorities to take this as seriously as they should,” Riley said in calling for the boycott. “I am reaching the point of exasperation,” he said. “Every time we talk to them we get a different response.”
One wonders the impact of an actual boycott and whether such measures will some how make a difference in how the investigation in to the disappearance of Natalee Holloway will be handled. The United States makes up a great deal of Aruba’s tourism. It is a shame that it ever had to come to this.
Tourism accounts for 70 percent of the gross domestic product of Aruba, an island of 97,000 residents which receives some 728,000 visitors each year and another 550,000 cruise ship passengers. Island officials have said more than 70 percent of the visitors are from the United States.