PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten — Independent MP Christophe Emmanuel on Wednesday dispatched a letter to the Minister of VROMI Egbert Doran with a number of questions regarding the reported relocation of persons living on the landfill to brand new homes to be built at the area known as the Foga Housing Development Project in Sucker Garden.
Emmanuel said in his letter to the Minister that persistent rumors and unconfirmed reports must be addressed post haste as there were existing plans for the area. One of his 10 questions to the Minister queried if there is any validity to the report that persons living on the landfill will each be compensated financially to move as well as the legal status of these individuals.
“The facts I know of is that the former leader of the National Alliance signed off on the Foga project in the area of the Melford Hazel Sports Auditorium to provide homes for young professionals returning home from college and other service professionals in the justice chain for example. About 32 homes I believe were to be constructed. The question now is what happened to those plans and if they were changed why. I hope the Minister uses the opportunity to clarify this issue,” MP Emmanuel said.
The MP asked Minister Doran the following questions:
1. What were the original plans intended for development of the so-called FOGA Housing project area?
2. If this area was intended for homes, please explain what type of homes (low cost?) and how many homes?
3. Has any infrastructure preparation been carried out in the area in preparation for construction of the homes? If yes, what were the costs attached hereto and please explain these works. If not, please explain why not.
4. Is it still the intention of the Ministry of VROMI and/or the Minister to stick to the original intention for development?
5. Has the Ministry and/or the Minister of VROMI changed the plans for the FOGA area? If yes, please indicate how?
6. Is it the intention Minister of VROMI to re-locate the persons currently residing on the Philipsburg landfill (the dump) to the intended new homes at FOGA?
7. If yes, how many people does this involve? Are they legal residents? Was their current homes built legally on the landfill? What about citizens who have been waiting on the provision of affordable homes?
8. Is it the intention of the Ministry and/or the Minister of VROMI to pay these persons to re-locate? If yes, why and what is the compensation? And from where will government derive these funds?
9. If the answer to question 6 is yes, please indicate if the Council of Ministers has approved this decision and when.
10. If the answer to question 6 is yes, is it the intention to let the people who also operate businesses on the landfill, to do so at FOGA as well? Were these businesses operating legally on the landfill?