Yet another postponement in presenting the final report on the formation of an interim UP/DP/Brownbill government (see related story) is starting to spark some concern. The deadline Governor Eugene Holiday gave “formateur” Franklin Meyers was already changed twice, apparently because the screening of candidate ministers has not been completed.
Mind you, that doesn’t necessarily mean there is anything wrong. It was suggested that the delay could be related to additional hurdles such as documentation and checks having to be channelled via Curaçao due to the impact of Hurricane Irma on the local administration and personnel.
However, it still seems a bit unfortunate that the process is taking so long after the new majority in Parliament not only passed motions of no confidence against the now-outgoing NA and US Party ministers, but even demanded already-resigned Prime Minister William Marlin’s immediate dismissal. The remaining caretaker cabinet can no doubt continue to get the job done, but expectations of a new team quickly taking over were created.
Questions are also increasingly being asked about the snap elections scheduled for February 26. There have been indications that the next Council of Ministers, although officially transitional in nature, will try to move them back by several months.
The latter is not illogical considering the current state of the island. Many believe returning to the polls at this time has been a very bad idea from the beginning and, after all, a similar precedent was set by the most recent interim cabinet that Marlin also headed.
However, until the public learns what will actually happen, preparations for an election must obviously go on unabated. The Voters Registry was closed on December 6 and one petition to register as “new political party” was filed at the Electoral Council within the term set for such that ended on November 23.
The Voting Bureau earlier this week reminded parties without representation in Parliament that they need to obtain support from 142 eligible voters to qualify. This is taking place at the Civil Registry Department building on Pond Island on Monday, January 8, from 9:00am to 4:00pm.
As the days and weeks pass, uncertainty regarding this matter grows, which along with all the other insecurities the population faces because of St. Maarten’s worst-ever natural disaster can hardly be considered a good thing.
Clarity is required sooner rather than later.
Bron: Daily Herald