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Grand rising people of Sint Maarten.

Dear Editor,

jgpeterson11032023My name is Joseph Peterson, I'm a candidate on the URSM party list.
I am here to talk to you about The Dangers of Selling Your Vote.
You are a loyal follower of your political party, however, you need to ask yourself the question: are you better off now, than how you were before you voted for them, if you are not satisfied with your situation right now, then it's time for you to make a change.
I have lived practically my entire life in Sint Maarten. I've seen all the different political parties come and go.
Every election is the same thing, those that are in power now try to fool the people by doing small things like fixing the roads, and other small things, which makes me wonder what happened to the years that they are in power, and why they don't follow through on their commitment to the people that voted them into Parliament.
Why aren't they helping the people, and why do they wait until it comes close to a new election year to start doing small things, to fool the people to vote them back in Parliament?
I'm here now to tell those people of Sint Maarten that believe that your vote doesn't make a difference, I totally understand where you’re coming from. There are some political parties hoping that you stay at home because they have their followers, and if you continue to believe that your vote doesn’t make a difference, then they have a chance to win and get right back in Government.
I know your hurting and struggling right now. Some of you are working two or even three jobs to make ends meet, and you really want to make a difference. In this upcoming election, you’re willing to come out to vote, and right now you don't know which political party will have the integrity and strength to make the difference that this Country really needs right now.
Unified Resilient Sint Maarten Movement (URSM), our name says it, we are Unified and Resilient. We strongly believe in the principle of democratic rule of Law and inclusion, while upholding and honoring our citizen's values as the fundamental rights, freedoms, and conscious convictions for all.
URSM will lead with a clear vision and approach that is anchored in dignity, integrity, equality, peace, and respect, contributing to the betterment of the people and Sint Maarten.
Now, to our topic of the article The Dangers of Vote Buying. There are different political parties running for this new election, and every one of the candidates of course has their favorite followers.
Some have rich followers, and some have regular followers; of course, there are those that are going to try to buy your vote. It might not be the politician themselves, but one of those rich followers are willing to buy your vote for the candidate that they are supporting because they want their candidate to win the election.
The integrity of the politician that their followers are buying votes for, is questionable. If those politicians do not reach out to their followers and let them know that it is wrong to buy votes, then that politician has no morals, no Character, and no integrity, and definitely does not deserve to be in parliament.
Those citizens that are willing to sell their vote need to think about their future, because the funds or items that they are going to get for their vote, will only last for that day or month or so.
What happens to you for the rest of the four years, when that politician is going to be in parliament? Do you believe that the politician you voted for is going to help you. They might not be the politician that bought your vote, it's probably one of the rich followers that wanted them to win the election, so be careful to whom you are selling your vote to. Quite frankly, your vote is valued more than what they might want to pay you.
You have the power this election to make a difference, I urge you to come out and vote, do your research, and vote for the right party the one that is going to help the people of this Country.
The URSM is a new party, and our Leader Dr. Luc Mercelina has been preparing his candidates for this election, and we do believe that we have a team of candidates, that are ready to lead our people and bring our country back on its feet, and make Sint Maarten once again, the Jewel of the Caribbean.
If you want a serious Government that will “HELP YOU” and Not “HURT YOU”… you must vote URSM
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March 9th, 2023

Letter to CARICOM Secretary General and CARICOM Head of States

jamesfines160202023H.E. Ambassador Mrs. Carla Barnett Secretary General Heads of Governments of the CARICOM, c/o CARICOM Secretariat, Turkeyen, Georgetown, Guyana

February 8, 2023

Subject: Bonaire Case with reference to Dutch Apology on the Agenda of the 44th Regular Meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government in Bahamas February 15th – 17th, 2023


With reference to the above-mentioned upcoming 44th Regular Meeting on the Agenda point “Dutch-Apology,” we would like your Honorable Barnett cooperation for the possibility to submit this urgent important letter/communication with the CARICOM Heads of States at your earliest convenience.

In this respect, we would like to add the following arguments for further considerations and discussions and actions based on the CARICOM Integration and Reparations vision and trajectory based on the recent New Year’s statement of the incoming chairman of CARICOM, Hon. Philip Davis: “We all share common histories— trials, traumas, and triumphs. As regional neighbors, we have, through the years, encountered many of the same hurdles, beat down the same walls, and conquered the same challenges. And indeed, we owe it to ourselves and each other to recognize that we are and always have been in this together.” ….

The recent December 19th, 2022 “Dutch-Apology” is a voluntary confession and admission of the Dutch government’s crimes against humanity, our enslaved and colonized ancestors, and is an international legal and diplomatic mechanism for correction and reparation of the past crimes and the continuous Dutch colonization of Bonaire and Caribbean peoples in this present time.

1 - Bonerian ancestors as well as all other Caribbean islands were forced/made slaves by these colonizers. As with the sweat, blood, and tears of our ancestors on Bonaire, whole enslaved families, men, women, children, and also convicted enslaved ancestors from other sister islands were sentenced to labor on the saltpans as punishment and were worked to death in these pans of Bonaire. With a very short life span, they cultivated, harvested, and shipped thousands and thousands of tons of this “white gold” to Holland to grow their main economic fishing pillar, building their economy and enriching themselves into one of the world's richest nations. All by our ancestors’ free labor and short-lived lives in these horror salt plantations 2 - After the Dutch abolition law of 1863, our ancestors could not work for free for them anymore, the Dutch government spitefully decided to divide our island into five big parts and sold our ancestors lands to Europeans in an auction in 1868 and abandoned our ancestors to fend for themselves. 3 - Our peoples, on all levels were systematically and premeditated and denied all historical information on our slavery past and history as it was never mentioned nor was put in our school curriculum that is up today controlled and imposed by the Dutch Education Ministry.

Upon the dissolution of the Netherlands Antilles in 2010 Bonaire was illegally annexed by the Dutch which resulted et al in the following:

- Opened borders for European Dutch exodus that doubled the Bonaire population in a decade, reducing the native Bonerians to less than 40%, minority on their own island. - Reversing education policies and laws, denying our children human rights to education in our own native language, Papiamento that is one of only two Caribbean native official languages that survived colonization. - Replacing, changing our demography, lifting all small-market protections to open market, open pricing, wiping out all our local businesses replacing them with Dutch Europeans and others. - Demoting and replacing all our local head of departments with Dutch immigrants taking over all local institutions and leadership positions. - Raising and imposing taxes to the level of Holland in Europe while our income is less than half of the income in Holland, Europe – land and property taxes increased by over 800%, destitute locals from their inherited lands and food resources. - Creating and maintaining social inequality, pushing over 60% of the Bonerian population under the poverty line - After the 2010 illegal annexation of Bonaire, Holland forcefully expanded their Exclusive Economic Zone with an extra 200 nautical sea miles Exclusive Economic Zone of the Southern Caribbean Sea Basin, an expansion of seven times more EEZ what they possessed before 2010 in the North Sea in Europe, in which they have absolute power by complete colonial rule from The Hague, Netherlands - The threat to the Caribbean as a peaceful region is real; recalling the 2018 and 2019 Dutch war-provocation re the Venezuela-embargo/sanctions as previous letters to CARICOM; With Bonaire 50 miles off the coast of Venezuela and possess a deep-water-harbor and the Dutch continuous efforts in expanding the international airport beyond commercial requirements to military standards and continuous efforts in buying properties around the airport - By instruction of Dutch government a group of the most decorated Dutch constitutional and legal experts researched and reported in June 2022 (see attached fact-check report), that the UN never confirmed decolonization of the Netherlands Antilles and the Dutch gave their own interpretation to article 73, a distorted process, as we never reached the UN mandated full measure of self-governance or mandated equality and freedom.

We the People of Bonaire are willing to accept the Dutch government's apology with the demand for reparations in the form the people's right to self-determination based on the following terms:

1: To re-enact our Bonaire people’s right to a just self-determination and decolonization process and trajectory by restoring our inalienable fundamental human rights by legal/political positioning, re-listing of Bonaire as United Nations Non-Self-Governing-Territory according to articles 1, 55, 73 and 103 of the Charter of the United Nations and resolutions 742, 747, 945, 1514 and 1541 that affirm the inalienable rights of the people of Bonaire to self-determination and in compliance with the Bonaire people’s international legal instruments: United Nations Charter, United Nations Decolonization Declaration, The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, International Covenant on All Forms of Racial Discrimination, United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. 2: To start an international and CARICOM/UN-guided process towards re-acquiring of the rights of the Bonaire peoples to their inherited auctioned lands. 3: Immediate stop of the current/ongoing de-population and eradication of Bonaire people’s demography and their culture, language and identity.

We are calling on CARICOM for solidarity and support for reparations for the Bonerian Peoples.


Yours Sincerely,


James Finies, President Nos Kier Boneiru Bek
Davika Bissessar, President Bonaire Human Rights

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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