THE HAGUE – CDA and VVD are insisting on a governmental intervention on Sint Maarten. The two coalition parties are ‘extremely worried’ about the reconstruction efforts now that the coalition on Sint Maarten has lost its majority.
The fact that the reconstruction efforts are being delayed due to a political impasse on the island frustrates both the CDA and the VVD. “Millions have been made available, but it seems that they’re not able to allocate it properly for the greater good.”
“I find it horrible to see how people are drowning and that I can’t do anything”, says Van Dam. “As a Dutch parliamentarian I see it as my responsibility – especially in the context of the Council of Ministers for the Kingdom – to act with responsibility.”
Parliamentary questions on possibilities to intervene
The CDA and the VVD both want to know from state secretary Raymond Knops (Kingdom Relations) what the possibilities are for the Hague to intervene in Sint Maarten.
“I’m extremely worried about the reconstruction efforts”, says VVD parliamentarian André Bosman. According to Bosman it’s time for the Council of Ministers for the Kingdom ‘to start applying pressure’. “Sometimes I feel like I care more about the inhabitants of Sint Maarten than its own leaders.”
Marlin-Romeo’s speech shocks the Hague
The now caretaker prime minister Leona Marlin-Romeo gave a speech on television on Monday, where she announced new elections after several parliamentarians left their parties and took their seats with them. Marlin-Romeo accused the parliamentarians of several things.
The government was working under ‘a culture of fear’ and parliament wished to violate the constitution. According to her there are ‘influential people’ outside of parliament who are actually in charge.
CDA parliamentarian Chris van Dam says that he was ‘deeply shocked’ by the speech given by Marlin-Romeo. “When a prime minister paints a picture like this, and confirms some of the suspicions and rumors, I have to listen to that.”
Concerns about elections
On the 25th of November Sint Maarten will head to the polls once more. “I’m concerned about the elections”, says Van Dam (CDA). “Because who are capable of doing a good job on Sint Maarten at this point in time? I’m fairly somber about the options after nine cabinets in ten years’ time.”
Intervention just like Statia?
The CDA is openly flirting with a governmental intervention, like the one on Statia. The local council was sent home in February of 2018 by the Hague, after a commission concluded that the special municipality was ignoring the law.
“I think that it helped Statia a lot to develop itself as a nation”, says Van Dam (CDA). “I don’t know what’s possible within the construct of the Kingdom when it comes to an autonomous country within the Kingdome, but I do believe that the time has come to research the possibilities.”
An intervention like the one that happened on Statia ‘could be an option”, says VVD-parliamentarian André Bosman, who together with the CDA asked Parliamentary questions. “We’re looking into all the options”.