Aruba, Curacao and St. Maarten take a stand: “No government can be the judge of its own actions”

POSTED: 08/20/14 6:34 PM

St. Maarten – The Presidents of the Parliaments of Aruba, Curacao and St. Maarten and their respective committees for Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations adopted two resolutions during their meeting on Monday. Yesterday they presented the resolutions during a press conference at the parliament building in Philipsburg.

One resolution urges the governments of the three countries to approach the Council of State for an advice about the instruction the Kingdom Council of Ministers gave in September of last year to Governor Drs. Eugène Holiday to conduct an integrity investigation in St. Maarten. The resolution urges similar action with regards to the Kingdom Council of Ministers’ instruction to Aruba’s governor Fredis Refunjol not to sign the country’s 2014 budget.

Urging the government of St. Maarten to approach the Council of State for advice about the integrity-instruction seems odd, because the government did this already last year – and the Council of State found no fault with the actions of the Kingdom Council of Ministers.

MP Roy Marlin, Chairman of St. Maarten’s Committee for Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations said that he was obviously aware of this, but that without this element, the resolution would have been incomplete.

The second motion urges the Parliaments and the governments of the Kingdom countries (again) to establish an independent institution for solving disputes between the countries. That institution ought to be tasked with binding rulings for strictly legal disputes about the interpretation of the Kingdom Charter.

The resolution states that establishing such an institution does not require any changes to the Kingdom Charter. It furthermore points out that the Kingdom Council of Ministers already decided on November 6, 2009, to establish a proper regulation to settle disputes. On April 12, 2010, the Second Chamber adopted a motion that urges the establishment of the same regulation and in March 2014, the Inter-Parliamentary Kingdom Consultation (Ipko) adopted the motion Yrausquin-Herdé that asked to establish the regulation by the end of that year.

Since nothing happened, the presidents of the three Parliaments and the three committees for Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations once more urged Parliaments and governments to take action in this respect.

René Herdé, Chairman of the Committee for Home Affairs and Kingdom Relations in Aruba, said at yesterday’s press conference that Aruba requested the meeting. “However, we did not come to ask other countries to intervene in our domestic affairs,” he said. “We came to discuss common factors and to ask for the establishment of an independent institution for settling disputes. No government, no body, can be the judge of its own actions.”

MP Roy Marlin said that there is an uphill battle ahead. “It was easy for the three Parliaments to come together and hammer out these draft motions, but we are still facing an uphill battle.”

Marlin referred to earlier decisions – as mentioned above – about the establishment of the institutions the three countries are now again asking for. “We will bring this issue up again in the next Ipko-meeting, in January 2015 in Aruba,” he said, adding “that there is nothing wrong with an uphill battle.”

 

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Aruba, Curacao and St. Maarten take a stand: “No government can be the judge of its own actions” by

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