PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten — United People’s UP Party’s Faction Leader in Parliament the honorable Grisha Heyliger-Marten is requesting that Prime Minister Silveria Jacobs urgently release an audit report conducted by SOAB on TelEM, which she believes will give insights into the challenges faced at the local telephone company.
MP Heyliger-Marten sent a letter to Prime Minister Silveria Jacobs on Wednesday, September 29, in which she stated that the matter has been ongoing for over one year. MP Heyliger-Marten continues to receive a series of complaints from employees and the St. Maarten Communication Union regarding the way TelEm is managed.
When she was first contacted, she reached out to the Union and employees to understand their concerns. Following her meeting with the Union and Employees, she pledged her support to the members and promised to await the outcome of a proper audit of the Company.
Since then, the audit has reportedly been conducted by SOAB, (Stichting OverheidsAccountant) the Company that Audits Government and Government-owned Companies, but that report has not yet been released. Some of the complaints from the Union and Employees include concerns over the general management of TelEm by CEO Kendall Dupersoy. The complaints made headlines when Dupersoy was accused of changing the employees’ pension scheme from an average pay system to a definite contribution system without any consultation with the workers or Union.
According to Heyliger-Marten, Prime Minister Jacobs sent an email to her on June 3rd of this year indicating that “as it relates to the SOAB audit, once the Shareholder receives a copy from the Company, and it is reviewed, a copy can be shared with the Honorable Members of Parliament.”
In her letter to PM Jacobs, Heyliger-Marten writes “It is in the best interest of all parties involved that the SOAB audit is finalized and discussed as soon as possible. Having the report will hopefully give an objective overview of what the issues are that need to be addressed, and how to best address them.” She said based on the outcome of the audit, several issues and concerns can be put to rest.”