The Peoples Interest Transcends Personal Agenda’s ”.
PHILIPSBURG:--- Former Chair of Parliament Gracita Arrindell said in a press release that “ Nine years into Parliamentary processes and procedures, leaves much to be desired of the performance and level of preparedness of our members of Parliament. The overall behavior of many MP’s in and outside of office lacks professional behavior and is bereft of respect to the office they hold.
MP’s who are neither ‘fish nor fowl’ because once elected regard their office as a free pass to attend meetings when convenient while enjoying a full-time excellent salary and benefits.
When they do manage to reluctantly show up, signing in only to leave to attend other ‘urgent’ matters. A slap in the face of folks who work hard and still struggle to make ends meet. MP’s who do not work should be held accountable by the people of Sint Maarten. What can be more pressing than attending to the issues that require the full attention of Parliament. Especially two years after a devastating Hurricane.”
Arrindell continues; “Members of the Council of Ministers fortunate to be appointed, have the audacity to display arrogance and disrespect towards Parliament.
This misguided behavior lacks respect to the institutions of government and of governance. In other words, Ministers by account of their undignified actions in Parliament, show contempt towards the People of Sint Maarten.
“Ministers are dead-wrong in their assumption that an MP can be ’talked down’ to. In Parliament, professional and ethical behavior applies both ways. It is not who is in front of you, but what you represent”.
“Parliament rules of order and Parliament handbook can be updated to include some guidance in these matters.
Any Member of the Council of Minister who defiles the House of Parliament with his/her diatribe and who publicly refuses to retract statements unbefitting for public consumption must be duly noted in the minutes of the meeting for the public record. Do not walk away.
The Council of Ministers must officially be informed in writing of such misconduct displayed by the Minister concerned and the (possible) consequences thereof. Ministers who do not sincerely apologize during the meeting for their misconduct, or those who act against their oath of office, must be served with a vote of none-confidence. It is high time for Parliament as a whole (Government supported and opposition) act in the general interest of this Country”,
Arrindell states; “Our Island deserves better in all aspects of its existence.
Unruly Ministers, as well as members of Parliament missing in action, should spare the public their theatrics. It is time to give citizens systematically account of their actions in terms of the policies and projects that are beneficial for future generations”
“This is Hurricane Season. Before MP’s rush to leave town for the July ‘recess’, it behooves them to stay home and call each Minister one by one to Parliament to give account (not in a press conference) regarding the state of preparedness of Sint Maarten. Above the surface most seems like business as usual. Looking closer reveals much anxiety among citizens and businesses alike.”
Finally; many matters require the undivided attention of Government and Parliament including but not limited to;
• The status of rebuilding existing hotel properties, including, Great bay hotel Mullet bay, Summit hotel, Diamond Resort, former Caravanserai, while new properties are being announced with much fanfare. Is there a delay, if yes, why?
• Debate the merits of excluding taxes on civil servants pension and pensioners in general
• Approve money-laundering laws. Avoid Sint Maarten being blacklisted. Not doing so affects our overall good standing in the world.
• Update rental committee ordinance to include rental fee per square meter per area.
• Government-owned companies concession fees should be reinvested in the budget towards school infrastructure and school-fees
PPA leader concludes; ‘When elephants fight, the grass gets trampled’
We must redirect our attention away from detractions and rise above the fray as we are still faced with serious issues facing our young nation. These matters are not insurmountable. We can get it right. We all have a stake in forging a great future for our island starting now.”