2009 official year-end address By the Honorable Mr. Frans G. Richardson – Commissioner


Fellow citizens, people of St. Maarten….

As we bid farewell to the year 2009, we welcome the year 2010 with high aspirations.

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The New Year is when 10-10-10 is to usher in a new period for our island, following many years of preparation, debate and uncertainties.

Most important is what these fundamental changes will mean for the government and people of this island.

As your representative, I want to assure you of my commitment to look for your best interests as we, together, create a better St. Maarten, not just for some, but for all.

In 2010, we have the opportunity, to continue to right some wrongs, when we go to the polls.

Having come this far, we, as a community, must learn from our past and collectively chart a more constructive path for our island.

With the economic setbacks of 2009 now behind us, we have reason to be optimistic.

When we welcomed the beginning of the year 2009, it was comparable to beginning a new chapter in a good book.

As in any good book, there have been many surprises, some fascinating turns of events, here and there sadness, once in awhile laughter and sometimes a little inspiration.

We may not be able to describe this past year as everything we would have wanted it to be.

While we have all been through some challenging times in the past 12 months, we must admit that there have been a few satisfying accomplishments along the way.

I want to express my personal and heartfelt thanks to all of you, members of the public, members of the civil service, well-wishers and persons of goodwill for most of these accomplishments.

Your balanced approach to hardships, your strength and most of all your courage is highly appreciated.

The social ills plaguing our island need a collective approach, if we are to be successful in making those changes that are truly necessary – in keeping with the principles and guidance shared with us by our forefathers.

For the New Year, let’s commit ourselves not to be deterred by obstacles placed in our way.

Let’s tell ourselves that we can reach new heights, explore new opportunities and embrace change like never before.

It is my hope that we will, once more, as a united people, keep our focus on the truly meaningful tasks that require the involvement of every member of our community.

We need to work together as effectively as possible and for the greater good of the whole of this St. Maarten in the New Year; together we can solve this island’s problems!

Your support and participation in the process of change and the many people who already provide input will go a long way towards shaping a healthier future for our future generations.

My family as well as all members of my office staff, join me in extending, to you, and to all of your loved ones, a prosperous, healthy and most blessed 2010.

May God Bless St. Maarten and May his blessings be with you throughout 2010.

I thank you.