The unraveling GEBE saga is symptomatic of a larger problem.

While I consider the conflict between the Supervisory Board of Directors and the MD/CEO of NV GEBE more of a labor issue or a conflict between employer and employee, the relationship between the Shareholder (the government of St. Maarten) and its company’s supervisory board deserves closer scrutiny and should concern us all.
This even more so, if we observe government’s behavior towards its companies in general.
The supervisory boards of these companies represent the shareholder, the government.
The government “owns” and directs these companies on behalf of the people of St. Maarten.
The supervisory boards and their managements need to protect the corporate operations of these government-owned companies as best as they can. No difference there between these companies and any other “private” company.
What is baffling, is when issues between the government as shareholder and its supervisory boards play out in public.
Granted, this is often difficult to control, but then it behooves government to also publicly set the record straight.
What we see happening now with government-owned companies or even government (related) foundations is undermining the credibility of these institutions and that of the government in general. By their very nature, these companies a/o foundations are all important to St. Maarten.
The question can rightfully be asked: “Who is steering this country and where to?”
All hope was pinned on the governing program for an answer to this question.
Sad to conclude, this document has not done so in the least.
A governing program presented TO the government by the coalition partners???
Usually these programs come FROM government, regardless of how the drafting takes place or with whose input.
What we witnessed, is the process in reverse and tells us a whole lot about the modus operandi of the governing partners on St. Maarten.