DP joins NA in call for Parliament meeting on land purchase

POSTED: 06/24/14 1:41 PM

St. Maarten – The Democratic Party (DP) faction in Parliament expressed its concern yesterday over the allegations made by National Alliance leader William Marlin over an alleged land deal worth $5.5 million approved by Vromi Minister Maurice Lake, appointed by the United People’s party (UP) and current DP coalition partner.  The DP said that, according to gossip news site SMN, the Minister has entered into an agreement with the Vorst family to purchase a parcel of land in Cay Hill that roughly translates to about $495 per square meter.

“The Democratic Party faction calls on Minister Maurice Lake to provide full disclosure surrounding this decision. The Democratic Party has also taken note of a request dated June 23, 2014, submitted by the National Alliance faction requesting the Chairperson of Parliament to convene an urgent meeting of Parliament regarding this matter,” the party DP Member of Parliament Roy Marlin. “The members of the Democratic Party faction support this call for the urgent meeting and request the Chairlady to consider calling this meeting post haste. In the words of Minister Maurice Lake, full disclosure, transparency and openness are needed at this point and time to the Parliament of St. Maarten.”

MP Marlin then went on to list the things he expects the Minister to provide information on. “Minister Maurice Lake should be able to provide to the Members of Parliament way prior to this meeting being convened at least the following information which should be readily available:

  • The legal advice from the Legal Affairs Department regarding the purchase of the property
  • The advice from the Ministry of VROMI regarding the purchase of the property
  • Any and all appraisal reports regarding the property which were commissioned by either the Minister, the Ministry of VROMI, the Vorst family or any other entity substantiating the agreed upon purchase price.
  • The decision from the Council of Ministers authorizing the Minister to enter into the agreement
  • The advice from the Ministry of Finance and or the financial controller at the Ministry of VROMI indicating that funding has been set aside to allow this purchase to take place.
  • In accordance with the signed agreement article 7 subject 1.1. it states “purchaser (Minister Lake) has full capacity, right, power and authority to execute deliver and perform under this contract and all documents to be executed by purchaser pursuant hereto.

“The Minister should be able to provide this information prior to the meeting in the interest of transparency, openness, and good governance,” MP Marlin concluded in his statement.



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