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EXCLUSIVE: UP board sets congress date for October 4th.

~ MPs cannot call for congress based on party by-laws, no room for the founder's wife to call congress.~

PHILIPSBURG:--- The much anticipated United Peoples Party congress that was expected to take place on July 3rd, 2022, will not take place since the UP board was not involved in organizing the much-needed congress.
A letter sent to the party supporters by the President of the Board Alfred Harley outlines the democratic principles of the United Peoples Party that were set in stone by its founders.
Harley in his letter said that the purpose of a congress is to combine the needs of the community to arrive at a fair, open, and equal dialogue, this he indicated can only be achieved if it is pursued peacefully, professionally, and ethically since the party’s goal is to form part of the government both at the legislative and executive levels.
Harley indicated that the UP Party should be busy executing long-term development plans for the people of St. Maarten including their economic, social, and educational wellbeing.
Currently, he said the main question is who should lead the party and when a congress should be held.

In an invited comment Alfred Harley said that he stands by the letter that was sent to all supporters of the UP Party.
He also indicated that he voted for the July 3rd date over a month ago and during that meeting he requested that the board vote on the proposed dates to bring the general meeting that same day for confirmation. However, the July 3rd congress date did not get the support and points brought forward by the elected members and other board members had merit.

Harley in his two-page letter proposed the following:
1. On Monday, July 4, 2022, hold a meeting of the Board to determine how to proceed with the membership drive in advance of Congress.
2. We agree on a Statement to inform the public that a congress will be held on Saturday, October 4, 2022. This should give everyone ample time to postulate for Party Leader or any position within the Party and rally their supporters, whom they must ensure are registered members with good standing in advance of the Congress.

A congress will therefore not be held at this time, as doing so will ignore the very foundation of democracy.
In the interest of preserving the future of the UP Party, he asked to ask that they agree to his reasoning and to the proposed steps to avoid the collision that will undoubtedly damage the Party's image.

Below is the full letter sent out by the UP Party President Alfred Harley.

 

Dear UP Party Supporters

Great political leaders build Political Parties on a foundation of Democratic principles, combining the interests and needs of the community to arrive at fair, equal and open dialogue.
Disagreements often will occur, but our discourse, when witnessed, should educate our members and bolster our Party's values and philosophy.

We can only achieve this utopia if it is pursued peacefully, professionally and ethically, maintaining cohesiveness as brethren. In all things, a Political Party's goal is to form or be part of Government, both the Legislative and Executive.
Today the United People's (UP) Party should be busy executing our long-term development plans for our citizens' economic, social, and educational well-being. Meanwhile, we struggle to find footing with one of the two Ministries we have to manage within this Coalition Government.

At the centre is the question of who should lead and if or when we hold a Congress. However, political parties typically use both leadership and a congress to reinvigorate support and generate new members as it prepares for the political battlefield of an impending election.
When done correctly, leadership, Party President, and board members can change hands and strengthen our movement. No one should stand in the way of a congress to hold on to a position. Any member in "good standing" who postulates and abides by a democratic process can be elected during a Congress. The UP Party's bi-annual Congress is long overdue, and the need for one is evident based on current events within our organization.

However, we cannot circumvent the democratic process by using lopsided interpretations of the Party's bylaws, casually applied to satisfy one particular plan over another. The next Congress must settle problematic issues such as sidelining the Board of the Party when convenient and reactivating them on short notice. It must answer questions about what constitutes a member in good standing or who should lead the UP Party.

No one can presume to know the Founder's mind-set when the UP Party was born. I can only imagine that he understood the enormous burden he would shoulder to keep his Party together. Our fight over leadership rather than nation-building shows that we are not politically aligned as a Party. While there is so much to accomplish, we have demonstrated only a willingness to destroy each other for personal advancement. I cannot be part of this charade and squandering of the people's trust in us through their vote.

I therefore strongly recommend that we hold our next Congress before the end of 2022. Leading up to the Congress, we must establish a legitimate membership through registration drives. Congress must be held with respect for the bylaws so that healthy disagreements can be settled appropriately, without a Court deciding. We cannot overthrow democracy and fairness for urgency and ignore these same bylaws without causing significant loss.

Therefore, I propose that we take the following steps:
1. On Monday, July 4, 2022, we hold a meeting of the Board to determine how to proceed with the membership drive in advance of Congress.
2. We agree on a Statement to inform the public that a congress will be held on Saturday, October 4, 2022. This should give everyone ample time to postulate for Party Leader or any position within the Party and rally their supporters, whom they must ensure are registered members with good standing in advance of the Congress.

Congress will therefore not be held at this time, as doing so will ignore the very foundation of our democracy.
In the interest of preserving the future of the UP Party, I ask that you agree to this reasoning and to the proposed steps to avoid the collision that will undoubtedly damage our Party's image.

I pray that God guides this political Party through these challenging times and into a future where we become the Party that leads St. Maarten into the future.

 

 

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