~ Refused to resign or be removed as the chair of parliament~
PHILIPSBURG:--- The Parliament of St. Maarten is held hostage by the chairlady of parliament Grisha Heyliger Marten who is at odds with her party leader Rolando Brison.
A public meeting of parliament was reconvened on Monday, September 19th, 2022 to further discuss the daft draft national ordinance amending the Temporary National Ordinance Covid-19 cuts in employment conditions for government employees in connection with the phased reduction of the COVID-19 cuts in government employees.
As the meeting opened, leader of the United Peoples Party (UPP) Rolando Brison tabled a proposal to add an agenda point which was to thank the chairlady Grisha Heyliger Marten and to relieve her as the chair of parliament. The proposal was seconded by two other members of parliament, however, Heyliger Marten then asked the Prime Minister what she had to say about the move made by Brison since she was the one that requested the meeting of parliament. Prime Minister Silveria Jacobs said she had nothing to do with the proposal made and she has nothing to add.
Member of Parliament Grisha Heyliger Marten then slammed the gavel and then adjourned the meeting.
Heyliger Marten then posted a flyer on her Facebook page where she announced that she will be on two radio stations on Tuesday, September 20th, 2022, where she intends to break her silence.
It should be noted that even though the parliament of St. Maarten has two vice chairs, namely MP William Marlin as the vice chair of parliament and Sidhardt Cookie Bijlani as the first vice chair of parliament neither man can convene any meetings of parliament as long as the chair is present or on the island.
This showdown reminds everyone of “You do not have the word” echoed by former Member of Parliament Rodolphe Samuel.
SMN News attempted to reach the chair of parliament Grisha Heyliger Marten by telephone and she did not respond to the call.
While the chairlady of parliament goes on her radio rant on Tuesday she should let the people of St. Maarten know if she is supporting the present coalition of 8. Heyliger Marten should also inform the people of St. Maarten if it is normal for the new coalition to allow her to remain as chair she is not at all objective during the handling of meetings of parliament, one such meeting is the meeting she called on the day parliament went on recess and summoned the Minister of VROMI Egbert Jurendy Doran to parliament to discuss the Ombudsman report. Heyliger also needs to tell the people of St. Maarten if she expects to be given extra privileges because she is the wife of former MP Theodore Heyliger or the wife of the founder of UPP.
Every other member of parliament resigned from the chair of parliament when they lose the majority. Should the rules be changed for Heyliger Marten. Has the power of the chair gone to her head that she can no longer see herself as a regular member of parliament? Most importantly Grisha Heyliger Marten has to ask herself how well she masters the rules of order of the parliament of St. Maaten and the Constitution of St. Maarten.