PHILISPBURG, Sint Maarten — Leader of the United St. Maarten Party (USP) Pamela Gordon-Carty on Wednesday said that After analyzing the numerous incidents that country Sint Maarten has been experiencing it would be prudent to have all the government owned companies examined and audited by an external trustworthy and unbiased entity.
In order to have a truthful financial overview of country Sint Maarten, GEBE, TELEM, PJIA, SMMC, The NRPB and SZV must be audited.
Too many irregularities exist that need to be clarified.
1. NRPB has a procurement process that is not justifiable based on the number of houses and roofs that are still not repaired since Hurricane Irma struck the country in 2017. People are still living in terrible living conditions since the Hurricane.
2. SZV has been distributing SSRP funds without exercising the required back checks, while it is public knowledge that a number of businesses received SSRP funds while their employees have not been paid.
3. SMMC, an important pillar in the health sector of country Sint Maarten, needs to be void of negative exposure and must guarantee that the construction project is properly managed and that the major vacancies are filled by competent locals.
4. PJIA has too many ongoing issues that indicate that an extensive investigation is inevitable. The red flags are visible and require urgent attention: Disgruntled employees, ongoing investigation of two high officials, a letter sent to Parliament and the Council of Ministers that appear to contain essential information with answers to many unanswered questions.
5. GEBE and TELEM are two vital government companies that must be managed in a transparent manner, which currently not the case. Employees are the primary asset of any organization, yet in both institutions disgruntled employees are afraid to bring their grievances to light in fear of losing their jobs. It is imperative to give these employees a listening ear while ensuring that transparency is upheld. A forensic audit must be conducted.
Although this doesn’t sound like what the people want to hear, it is important to note that these facts have been exposed in the financial recovery plan book that I wrote. I can imagine that launching an investigation into the finances of these government owned companies will lead to many irregularities being surfaced. In order to move our country forward and start to remedy the irregularities of the country, the true state of affairs must be revealed once and for all.
We are discussing the 2022 budget while we are unaware of the country’s true financial situation. Why are we discussing a budget while the country’s true financial situation is not being dealt with in a transparent manner?
The country cannot present a proper budget while we omit to deal with the issues from the root. One must be aware of the country’s true financial position is now in order to move forward. To discuss the budget at this point while the country’s major income sources are not being evaluated, is simply ludicrous! To governing a country in this manner, is equal having a magic wand of wishful thinking.
The budget, in my honest opinion, does not reflect half of the issues of our country. Do we expect anything different, while the same mistakes are being made? Years of making the same mistakes will produce the same downfall results. Where is the “behoorlijk bestuur”?