Prime Minister Sets Record Straight on National Ordinance Regulating the Prosecution of Politicians

Will Initiate Radio Program so Citizens can Form an informed Opinion

The Prime Minister of St. Maarten the Honorable Sarah Wescot-Williams commented on Wednesday that she had taken note of both erroneous reports in the media, particularly in the Netherlands, and comments which were made by Dutch Politicians regarding St. Maarten’s National Ordinance Regulating the Prosecution of politicians. The Prime Minister commented on how easily it is for misinformed media outlets and the politicians who use those outlets to guide their opinions to accept a wrong story as fact.


"I have taken note as to how some politicians in the Netherlands have described the National Ordinance that exists regarding the prosecution of politicians. Those of you who could remember the discussion of this and other laws would also remember that on St. Maarten there was significant discussion as it relates to the integrity of Government. It now is erroneously reported that the Second Chamber was caught sleeping while they allowed that particular law to pass. Nothing could be further from the truth. This particular law in question was one of the Organic Laws and as such was vetted by the Vetting Committee. This Committee decided that St. Maarten had complied with the necessary checks and balances necessary in order to become Country St. Maarten. This particular National Ordinance forms part of the Organic Laws which were passed before 101010. Indeed there were significant discussions on the one hand, with those stating at the time that it was discriminatory on one hand because it was putting an extra step in place as far as the prosecution of politicians are concerned. However, politicians are politically exposed persons and we have seen cases where the prosecution of politicians was taken too lightly without it being necessary for the prosecutor to present the facts. While taking all of this into consideration the law in question was agreed to and passed on the tenth of October 2010 and unfortunately this is just one example of some of the things which are erroneously thrown out and taken as fact," stated the Prime Minister.

In order to combat the misinformation which has been circulating in the media and within the community as of late, the Prime Minister also announced that she would be initiating a Radio program called One on One with the Prime Minister during which the PM will give information to the Public on matters of Government, but will also feature the opportunity for citizens to call into the show with their respective questions. "It is actually my intention to start a program called One on One with the Prime Minister on April the 5th which will air weekly from nine until ten am on 98.1 Pearl FM. It will allow persons to call into the program, however the main the focus will be to provide information on Government and other matters so that the people of St. Maarten can form an informed position on matters while having the information which is critical and crucial and necessary for them to form that opinion. We want to focus on the responsibility that Government has of being transparent and open. We have an ongoing integrity program which was initiated with Government and which is still on going. This will be one of various topics which I will be addressing in the weeks to come," concluded the Prime Minister.