SMN News learnt that most of the coalition partners wanted Arrindell out of the presidential chair immediately but at least one Independent Member of Parliament that is supporting the coalition requested that they leave her in the position until July 15th since Arrindell already made arrangements to accompany Minister of Justice Roland Duncan to Paris to attend an Interpol meeting. According to well placed sources in Parliament, Arrindell received an invitation from Interpol to attend their meeting in Paris as the Chair of Parliament and a decision was taken on the trip on Thursday. Sources in Parliament said that Arrindell is scheduled to leave on July 13th 2012 and she should be returning to the island by July 15th 2012, the day she is expected to pass on the mantle to the new chairman elect Rudolph Samuel.
The motion presented by Member of Parliament Roy Marlin states that considering that the coalition majority which was formed by the UP/DP and Independent Member of Parliament Illidge, no longer enjoys the majority support of Parliament and a new governing agreement was formed consisting of the NA/DP/and the Independent Members of Parliament Frans Richardson, Romain Laville, and Patrick Illidge, the former governing agreement is null and void. The new governing agreement regulated the portfolios and Ministries for the political parties and Independent Members of Parliament; the motion further states that the chair of parliament was allotted to the National Alliance and while most of those positions were filled with new people, the chair of Parliament remained the same. Marlin said all the terms of the new political agreement have been executed thus far with the exception of the chair.
He said in order for a government to carry out its policies and considerations for the governing period, the government under normal democratic circumstances, should at all time be supported by a majority of parliament and this also includes the person that holds the function of Chairperson of Parliament.
Marlin indicated that the coalition members sent a letter on June 18th requesting a meething of Parliament with one agenda point which was to appoint a new chairperson of parliament. Furthermore, the chairlady requested more information which was provided on June 20th 2012.
Marlin said on June 27th the chairperson of Parliament made her position available to parliament as per September 1, 2012. However, that is not in keeping with the governing agreement, as all other respective functions that have been agreed upon have been filled with the exception of the chair of parliament.
MP Roy Marlin further stated in his motion that article 57 of the Constitution states that Parliament shall appoint from its membership the Chairperson and Deputy Chairperson of Parliament at any time.
The motion ended with its resolution to declare that the Chairperson of Parliament no longer enjoys the support of the majority of Parliament and that the parliament in accordance with article 57 of the Constitution of St. Maarten will appoint per July 15, 2012 a new member to occupy the position of Chairperson of Parliament.
The motion was sent to the Governor of St. Maarten, The Council of Ministers of St. Maarten, The Kingdom Council of Ministers, The Chairperson of the Second Chamber in the Netherlands, and The Chairperson of Parliament of Curacao.
Shortly after the motion was passed and accepted the eight MPs representing the majority in parliament voted in favor for drs. Rudolph Samuel be appointed as the chair of parliament. The members of the UP faction voted blank.
Member of Parliament Jules James attacked his colleagues for disregarding the Rules of Order and instructed them to read those orders not realizing that he himself did not read the Rules of Order and the Constitution of St. Maarten.Shorty after making his statements, MP Roy Marlin corrected MP James and told him he should be the one to read the laws of country St. Maarten, the chairlady of parliament who sided with James when he was making his statements ended up apologizing to Parliament for her error.
James also attacked the online media for criticizing parliament for not having its records in order since to date there are no minutes of the meetings held over the two year period. He said Arrindell worked hard as the chairperson and she also insisted to the griffier of Parliament Josef Semeleer that he make the minutes available to Parliament.
Click here to view more photos of parliamentarians inside parliament building before the motion was presented.