President of Parliament dispatched letter to the Dutch Second Chamber
on Instructions given to St. Maarten’s Governor
PHILIPSBURG:— The Prime Minister and President of St. Maarten’s parliament penned a four page letter to the Dutch second chamber informing them of the standpoint of St. Maarten’s Council of Ministers.
Prime Minister Sarah Wescot Williams states clearly in her letter that the Council of Ministers on St. Maarten will not cooperate with the execution of the Kingdom decree and will contest the decree and all actions flowing forth there from in and out of court.
The letter starts of by stating that although the three Caribbean countries voted against the Royal Decree, the Kingdom Council of Ministers rammed through a Royal Decree putting on hold the nomination of the proposed Prime Minister, Ministers and Minister plenipotentiary. The Prime Minister further stated that the autonomy spoken of in the Kingdom Charter is being violated. St. Maarten resists this abuse of power. The population of St. Maarten chose to be part of a Kingdom where the rule of law prevails and not “might is right”
The letter went on to list six objections against the Royal Decree, amongst which was the untenable position in which the decree placed the governor.
The action of the Kingdom Council Of Ministers are therefore unlawful and in conflict with the principles of good governance.
The Kingdom Council of Ministers issued two instructions to the Governor of St.Maarten within a one year time span since the UP/DP government took office in 2013. The first instruction ordered the governor of St. Maarten to conduct an integrity investigation, which was conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers of New York. When that instruction was given by Kingdom decree to St. Maarten the government of St. Maarten fought severly against it but the Dutch maintained their stance on getting the integrity investigation conducted. The second instruction was issued on September 17th 2014 when the Dutch realized that the UPP and DP formed a coalion government. This time the Minister of Interior and Foreign Relatons Ronald Plasterk informed the second chamber of all the decisions he has taken regarding St. Maarten, one of which the Governor of St. Maarten must not sign any Landsbesluit to appoint the Ministers selected by the current coalition unless they are screened the way the Dutch wants the screening to be done.
Even though the current coalition has the majority support in the Parliament which was installed on October 10th 2014, that coalition is still not able to govern. Currently the Prime Minister is holding two positions, one being the Prime Minister of St. Maarten and the President of Parliament. Member of Parliament Frans Richardson questioned the fact that three Members of Parliament are holding doublle functions and asked if the people of St. Maarten has to pay namely the Prime Minister, MInister of Health and Labor and the Minister of VROMI two salaries untill a new council of ministers is installed.