GREAT BAY – The National Alliance (NA) faction in Parliament is gravely disappointed in the manner in which the continuation of Public Meeting #23 was postponed upon the request of Minister of Public Housing, Spatial Planning, Environment and Infrastructure (VROMI) Miklos Giterson’s via email on January 21, the day before the scheduled meeting was to reconvene. Note also that this was done with without stating any reason whatsoever.
Members of Parliament were in turn notified by Parliament also via email around 7:30pm on Monday evening of this postponement. This coming on the heels of the months long discussions, notifications, media reports and public discourses on the manner in which meetings are being called, and the backlog of pending meetings. This also amidst the discretion being exercised by the Chair in recent months not to honor the requests for Urgent meetings, specifically by the minority in Parliament, when we attempt to hold Government to account related to topics of interest to the well-being of the people of St. Maarten.
The notification of postponement also was received late Monday evening after the adjournment of the urgently requested Airport loan/grant meeting during which members of Parliament expressed concern about the manner in which more and more conditions were being accepted in addition to the ones already agreed upon to receive the funds in the first place, and where MP Christophe Emmanuel (NA) entered a motion of no-confidence in Minister Stuart Johnson which was co-signed by all NA/USP members in the first round.
Though this meeting had not been requested by the MPs in question but on behalf of government is a continuation of a meeting called by Government and regards legislation that is well needed and has been in process since 2015/2016. This lack of respect for the Members of Parliament in postponing meetings with no explanation whatsoever is unacceptable and an affront to Parliament and by extension the people we represent, the people of Sint Maarten.
Noteworthy to mention is that the majority in Parliament did not have a majority at the time of the adjourned meeting and it is highly likely that a supportive majority would also not be in place for the continuation of OV 23 had it taken place on Tuesday, thereby leaving the members of the CoM/government open for even more motions of no-confidence which could then be voted on and passed. If this is indeed the reason for the postponement, then the people of St. Maarten should sit up and take notice of the obvious manipulations taking place at this time.