Considers political career: Emil Lee resigns as SHTA-President

POSTED: 03/31/14 11:39 PM

St. Maarten – Emil Lee, announced his immediate resignation as the President of the St. Maarten Hospitality and Trade Association yesterday at the membership mixer at the Blue Mall. Lee, manager of the luxury boutique hotel Princess Heights, led the SHTA exactly thirteen years. The decision to step down has to do with the possibility that Lee will be a candidate in the upcoming parliamentary elections. Eveline Henriquez Dijkhoffz will succeed Lee as the SHTA’s president.

In a letter to the board members of the SHTA, Lee states that he has been approached by several parties. “While I haven’t decided if I will participate or in what capacity, the discussions are of a nature and level of seriousness that I believe it will be increasingly difficult for me to maintain a non-political status.”

To this, the resigning president adds that its non-political nature has always been a critical component in the SHTA’s ability to work with government irrespective of who is in power at a particular moment. “I believe it would be hypocritical to speak about integrity and transparency and have my actions demonstrated a different reality,” Lee wrote, adding that using the SHTA as a political platform to launch a political agenda would be hypocritical and destructive to the organization. “I believe that my deliberation about joining the political arena jeopardizes SHTA’s non-political status and therefore makes my continued presidency untenable.”

For the unabridged text of Lee’s letter to the board members of the SHTA, see our opinion page.

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