Several Candidates selected to be screened for Ministerial Posts.
PHILIPSBURG:--- According to information provided to SMN News the Governor of St. Maarten drs. Eugene Holiday convoked Prime Minister Marcel Gumbs to his office on Friday where he informed him that he will not be signing the resolution for new elections since there is a majority in Parliament. SMN News further learnt that the Prime Minister refused the verbal advice given to him by Governor Holiday and he now chooses to use the people’s money to start a court procedure.
On Saturday evening SMN News managed to obtain the advice the Gumbs cabinet received from Professor Ajen Van Rijn who tells the Council of Ministers that they are in their rights to invoke article 59 of the Country’s Constitution after they were fired by a majority in Parliament. While the good professor has the rights on how he interpret the law, or the articles of the country’s constitution there is one thing the professor cannot do is to determine or say what was the intention of the legislators when they insert that article in the country’s constitution. What is even more disturbing is Prime Minister Gumbs an appointed Minister who was already on pension told the people of St. Maarten that there will not be any local or Mexican stand-off should the Governor refuse to sign the resolution to call for new elections. If what the Prime Minister told the people last Thursday is his true intentions then one would beg to know why is he trying to “buy time” and head to court. Certainly, the Prime Minister and his entire cabinet knows what the outcome of that court case would be. It is very important for the Parliament of St. Maarten to pass a motion to block all new decisions taken by the Gumbs cabinet even by Ministerial decree in order to stop the wheeling and dealing. Another option for this young country to ensure that those persons that formed the Gumbs cabinet be taken out by the hook or the crook and a business cabinet be installed immediately. Persons that should be appointed are those that do not have any type of political affiliation. Parliament must then convene a meeting to deal with the country’s constitution that will address the ship jumping and or seat selling and buying. Only after such measures are taken then a new election must be called in order to get rid of the rotten apples and those persons in Parliament that have taken the mandate given to them by the people to conduct their private businesses or to enrich themselves at the expense of the working class.
SMN News got a lot of information where members of the community are ready to take the law in their own hands in the form of a revolution. One must know that chaos and public disorder will not benefit St. Maarten and its people and while there are number of people calling for this type of thing on the social networks, residents and citizens of this country need to begin thinking for themselves and have some faith in the judicial system even if it is not functioning the way the country would have liked it to function. Public disorder and or misconduct will not be tolerated and those thinking about it should know that it is a criminal offence to form a plot that will cause distruction or even public disobedience.
While all of the above is taking place to stagnate and or delay the process of having a new government several key persons within the community have been contacted to become Ministers. Some of the names SMN News managed to obtain are the following.
- William Marlin --- Prime Minister
- Silveria Jacobs --- Minister of Education, Youths and Sports
- Richard Gibson Sr.--- Minister of Finance
- Emil Lee --- Minister of VSA (Labor, Health and Social Affairs)
- Ingrid Arrindell --- Minister of TEATT
- Angel Meyers --- Minister of VROMI
- Glenn Daniels --- Minister of Justice
Besides having candidates in place the new coalition consisting of eight already have a governing program which they intend to use to hit the road running if they are given the chance to take office as early as possible.
In an invited comment Member of Parliament Sarah Wescot Williams said she respects Professor dr. Ajen van Rijn opinion on the matter but alsorespectfully disagree. MP Wescot Williams further explained that it must first be noted that this advice came on request of the Government of St. Maarten and (officially) AFTER the government had taken its stand.
There is no disagreement about the fact that the government has the constitutional possibility to dissolve parliament.
This constitutional fact however does not make parliament subordinate to government. The position of parliament as the highest political body of the land remains intact. Furthermore, the legal references used by Prof. van Rijn are in line with and taken from developments and the political evolution of the Netherlands. We are not even remotely close to that type of evolution and political growth.
It must be noted though that in the political evolution of the Netherlands, the part of dissolving parliament due to a conflict between government and parliament lost its importance.
The impetus for such dissolution nowadays is more for parliament to have the opportunity to get(appoint) a government it approves of.
In the case of St. Maarten, the declaration by the 8 members already establishes this support for a (new) government.
The government's first mistake was to defy the constitution and not resign following the motion of no confidence.
"If he fails to do so, then he is breaching the constitutional legal system". (St. Maarten Constitution).
The attributed right to dissolve parliament is not a measure to express the government's displeasure with parliament at whim.
The argument to dissolve parliament as expressed by the Gumbs cabinet is weak and erroneous. Elections will NOT bring stability!
The government is therefore in my opinion misusing a constitutional instrument and it is a slap in the face of parliament and the people of St. Maarten.
And an extenuating factor is of course that the majority of members of government, with the exception of 1, are/were not elected, did not even run for office. And they are challenging those persons elected by the people.
I reiterate that 1) electoral reform is pivotal, 2) the matter of a no confidence motion must be further regulated (this is provided for in the constitution) and 3) we need to localize (St. Martinize) our laws, including our constitution.