The wrong perception should not be created against instruction by Kingdom Council of Ministers

The wrong perception should not be created says Member of Parliament George Pantophlet that he is against the instruction given by the Kingdom council of Ministers and approved by the majority of the Second Chamber of the Dutch Parliament for the Governor of St. Maarten to carry out an integrity investigation.


But he is concerned as to what criteria would be used and what it means. Are we talking Dutch assistance or control? In his first encounter with Dutch technical assistant in the mid 90’s when he worked at the Immigration Department in a meeting the manner in which so called information was being given or requested he was and is still convinced that the Dutch wanted to take control and not to assist. They were talking about the NAVAS system which would give them access to our immigration files. The Member of Parliament says that in the Kingdom Resolution it says and he freely translates: Based on the results of the investigation and proposals that come out of these investigations, the Government of St. Maarten can in cooperation with the other countries of the Kingdom make improvements where it is necessary. It continues: With this resolution an important step will have been taken to restore the trust nationally and internationally in the integrity and proper functioning of the civil apparatus. He thought that cooperation was already taken place based on agreements signed. The Member of Parliament made it clear on several occasions that he is a proponent for Independence. But this does not mean that it should happen tomorrow and it does not mean that with a simple phone call St. Maarten can be thrown out of the Dutch Kingdom. A referendum should be held where the people decide what kind of status they want. The majority of the people on St. Maarten voted in a referendum on June 23, 2000 to remain within the Kingdom of the Netherlands. Mr. Bosman himself stated and he quotes; "International Treaties made it impossible to throw a country (and I insert here questionable) out of the Kingdom." End of quote. There are persons who are saying "Bring in the Dutch". What does this mean? In the opinion of the Member Parliament it means help us get the mess clean up and then you may leave and we will call you when needed. But what is their real agenda? It is a matter of trust. How much do we trust them? Here is where as he mentioned before there needs to be clarity. It would indeed benefit all of us if the government functions in a transparent and responsible manner. The Member of Parliament says he does not condone what is happening presently on the island where politics and some politicians are concerned. He has a very serious issue that still needs to be clarified and this has to do with the AUC and the 100 million guilder tax deal. Don’t think for once that this matter will go away. He has issue himself with the National Security Service where an SOAB report is being mentioned in press briefings but not presented to parliament. He has issues with the fact a petition in accordance with article 24.1 of the Constitution of St. Maarten submitted by citizens sometime in May of this year which reads: Everyone is entitled to submit written petitions to the competent authorities has not been handled. They were asking for early elections. Also article 68 of the same Constitution reads: The Parliament shall investigate all petitions submitted to it. The Governor also made reference to this petition in a letter to Government which is also on the desk of the Council of Ministers. These persons deserve an answer. There are administrative laws by which government has to function and these must be adhered to. Again the Member of Parliament is saying that he does not want the wrong perception to be created that he does not support an investigation for reasons mentioned before but needs clarity on the matter.