Great Bay, St. Maarten – “Our island is going through perhaps one of the most trying times of its history. People have taken advantage of the incredible devastation of Hurricanes Irma and Maria to impose their will on us; to divide and conquer, when we were at our lowest,” said Grisha Heyliger-Marten in a press statement issued Sunday.
“It is sad, very sad, that we now turn on each other, rather than come together. It’s tit for tat. We take everything very personal and want to hit back at our very own but all we’re doing is playing into the hands of other people,” she said.
Breaking her silence on the developments on the island, and the protracted investigation into her husband, MP Theo Heyliger’s alleged attempt at bribery, Grisha Heyliger-Marten called for the people of St. Maarten to unite in these trying times.
“I admit that I have remained silent for too long, just like so many other St. Maarteners. But it wasn’t out of fear; it was more because, being Theo Heyliger’s wife, it seemed the prudent thing to do. But let me make this very clear: I’m not asking anyone to fight for my husband. That’s my fight and I got that. All I’m saying is that we need to open our eyes and see what’s happening before it’s too late.
“Besides, there is a danger in remaining silent; and that is, what do I tell my children when they ask, “Mommy, what did you do when all of this was happening?” I can’t reply by saying: “I did nothing; I remained silent.” Silence, they say, means consent. In fact, it could mean complicity. We have to all stand up together for our island,” she said.
According to Grisha Heyliger-Marten,
“It is incredible that today, we seem to love those who have historically oppressed us over even our own family! And while we fight each other – tooth and nail – others are taking over the island in broad daylight.
“Honestly,” she continued, “this is not about one individual; it is not about one politician. It is not about my husband. I think if we continue to look at it like that, we will remain divided and that will be the end of us. Believe me, the way I see it, it is St. Maarten in trouble. That’s why we need to unite. We need to come together, now! It’s about St. Martin. It’s about our island. It’s about our children and their children’s future.”
She said if we continue to focus on “what this or that one did or did not do; what he said or she said about me… if we continue to think that it will never happen to us, then we would have learnt nothing from history.”
“This is bigger than any one of us. That is why I am calling on all of us, to set aside our differences – even if for a little while – and come together to stand up for our island.”
“In the end, when we look back, we will realize that the real disaster that struck us was not Hurricane Irma; it was not Maria; the real disaster that struck us was our lack of unity. That is why if we want to save our island and move forward, we must unite, now,” she concluded.
Grisha Heyliger-Martens will be guest on the Breakfast Lounge with Lady Grace on PJD-2 Radio at 9:00 o’clock Tuesday morning.