photo: John Samson

THE HAGUE – If a new election is permitted on St. Maarten in January, the agreement between the Netherlands and St. Maarten for one million euros in reconstruction funding will be annulled.

The parliament of St. Maarten voted out the William Marlin government on Thursday, because Marlin does not agree with the stern conditions. However State Secretary of Kingdom Relations Raymond Knops only wants to “do business” with a government who has been governing for a longer period of time. The Netherlands fears that the decision made after the election could reverse the agreement.

The parliament of St. Maarten voted on Thursday to accept the strict conditions of the Netherlands in order to receive the million euros, but this is still not sufficient for Knops. “The majority of today is not a guarantee in the long run. So there is concern for a situation of political uncertainty. This is why I want to the know position of the governor on this matter.

The Netherlands wants action

The State Secretary will “take a stance” after his discussion with the governor, the leader of government and the Kingdom Representative on St. Maarten. “The Council of Ministers supports me on this and also on the next steps I will take,” said Knops. Pointing out that what he proposes will be “extremely serious” in order to allocate the funds immediately and to prevent further postponements.

It is a possibility that Knops’ decision will result in an administrative intervention by the Netherlands on St. Maarten. Opposed to the press, Knops did not want to enter on Friday. When asked by the press on Friday, Knops refused to go into detail on the subject.

We want the Dutch money to be spent accordingly and we will not take this lightly. The conditions still stand.

Knops to visit St. Maarten
The new state Secretary of Kingdom Relations is expected to spend two weeks in St. Maarten for political exchanges and further talks on reconstruction.