~ MP Rolando Brison first vice chair, MP Luc Mercelina second vice chair.~
PHILIPSBURG:--- Former Prime Minister and also the former leader of the National Alliance William Marlin was elected chairman of the parliament of St. Maarten. The nine-seat coalition members elected Marlin as chair on Wednesday after the agenda for the public meeting was amended in order for the chairs of parliament to be elected. 12 Members of Parliament attended the meeting called on Thursday, while nine voted for MP William Marlin to accommodate the chair of parliament the three members from the opposition voted blank.
Marlin in his remarks after taking up his new role in parliament said he took note of the remarks made by MP Rolando Brison who lamented the way parliament functioned over past two years and said that it is his hope that parliament will function better in the future which would allow members of parliament to do their jobs.
MP Rolando Brison was elected first vice-chair of parliament with nine votes in favor with three blanks, Brison’s election on Wednesday actually filled the vacant position left by MP Theodore Heyliger who has been suspended since his arrest earlier this year. Marlin said since MP Heyliger was suspended the parliament of St. Maarten never filled that position and now that the Brison has been elected to the seat, they Heyliger is officially relieved from his responsibilities and duties towards parliament as the first vice-chair. Elected to the position of second vice chair is MP Luc Mercelina who also garnered 9 out of 12 votes while 3 voted blank.
The new presidium of parliament members is chairman William Marlin, first vice chair MP Rolando Brison and second vice chair MP Luc Mercelina.
Also, during that meeting seats were swapped in order to keep the coalition members together while the opposition sits together.
MP Frans Richardson took the opportunity to extend condolences to former MP Maurice Lake who recently lost his father, leader of the National Alliance Silveria Jacobs and MP Tamara Leonard also extended condolences to Maurice Lake on the passing of his father.
MP Sarah Wescot Williams in her sarcastic remark during the notification said would have liked to see another sequence in the appointments to the position of chair and vice chairs. Wescot Williams then reminded the public that the annual report of parliament 2018-2019 is available which would explain her comments on the sequence of the appointment of the members of the presidium members.