The Flemish Christian-democratic CD&V party reaffirmed its centrist vocation at a congress in Antwerp on Saturday, at which it also unveiled its new motto, “Van het volk en voor het volk” (“Of the people and for the people”) as well as a new logo.
“We already were, and still are the party that works for ordinary people,” CD&V President Joachim Coens said at the meeting, Belga News Agency reports. “The people are too dear to us to be left to the extremes.”
Speaking from the podium in the Queen Elizabeth Hall, Coens lamented the decline of the centrist parties which, he said, had become “too elitist,” “too rootless,” and “too incapable of responding to the concerns of ordinary people.”
According to Coens, radical parties are gaining ground, but most electors are not inclined to hand their votes to extreme-right or extreme-left groups.
“This vacuum needs to be filled by a real centrist party, the people of the centre need to be with us,” Coens stressed, regretting that his party had “forgotten to say where we came from and why we are in politics.”
The CD&V is the third-largest party in Flanders, after the right-wing N-VA and the far-right Vlaams Belang, which significantly improved its share of the vote at general elections in 2019, at the expense of the CD&V and other moderate parties.