Jubilee Library insurance settlement money disappears!



PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten — Gromyko Wilson candidate on the USP party for the upcoming election January 11, 2024 is worried that the insurance settlement payout for the Public Library was spent on other things, instead of on rebuilding the library. No one knows why the money was not sent to the library’s bank account.

On November 23, 2023, the library will celebrate its 100-year anniversary. After 100 years, it’s a shame that it has gone from being a hub of activities for old and young; from poetry reading by young adults; from children’s story time; from rooms once filled with curious readers fascinated by the wonders and stories of the books that they held in their hands, to rooms now filled with used condoms, discarded marijuana butts and dog feces.

It is a shame that the once center for education of all ages, is now a mosquito-breeding ground, and the books and employees are cramped in a small building just a stone’s throw away. They do the best that they can, with what they have, while they wait for the NRPB/World Bank/Consultant to come through for them.

My question is:

  • Why did it have to come this far?
  • Where is the insurance money that should’ve been paid out to, at least, secure the roof so that we could have our library back again?

I’ve heard the stories of several residents on this island that had utilized the library decades ago. It was a famous hang out spot for highschoolers.

“The school children” said that they heard that the insurance money that was supposed to be given to the library from the insurance settlement was placed on ‘another account’ and subsequently used accordingly by the owner of the account, leaving the library without a say and without a roof.

I want to ask the Minister of Education the following:

  • Who is to blame? 
  • The board or the owner of the account or government? 
  • Where are we going with the library and what will become of this institution?

We have so many questions about this library, but since it is heavily subsidized by the government, then the government should investigate this. 

  • Where is the money?
  • How was it spent?
  • And why was it not given to the library?

As a future Member of Parliament, I would demand information from the Minister of Education. This falls under your portfolio. It’s the taxpayers’ money.

Minister of Education drs. Rodolphe E. Samuel, YOU must give account for this, especially after the subsidy from the library was cut.