New politicians complete good governance coursePOSTED: 06/28/16 7:54 PM
Party leaders Wycliffe Smith and Mercedes van der Waals-Wyatt show their certificates. Photo contributed
St. Maarten News – Party leaders, Mercedes “Elektra” van der Waals-Wyatt of Hope and Wycliffe Smith of Sint Maarten Christian Party, were part of the first graduating class of Scell’s good governance course offered by the University of St. Martin.
The graduation ceremony was held at the university last Thursday with invited guests, family and friends. The evening consisted of a reception, the presentation of certificates to the graduates by Scell-Director Dr. Natasha Gittens and a five minute presentation by each graduate pertaining to the constitution and other organic laws of Sint Maarten. The evening ended with a panel discussion with the five graduates and Mr. Hensely Plantijn, the course facilitator as the moderator. Family, friends and invited guest attending the graduation were given the opportunity to pose questions and to engage in some very interesting discussion with the graduates.
By attending this course on good governance Van der Waals-Wyatt and Smith “demonstrate how important it is for new political leaders who aspire to become future leaders of government to prepare themselves by acquiring the necessary knowledge and skills as far as it pertains to good governance,” the two party leaders stated in a press release. They also decided to issue a joint press release “to demonstrate that political leaders can sit in class together and study together in the interest of and for the greater good of our people and our country.”
“Over the last few months we have acquired a great deal of knowledge, had many intense discussions relating to the current developing issues in St. Maarten which we applied to our learning process at this good governance course,” Van der Waals-Wyatt stated. “I looked enthusiastically forward to each class. Getting acquainted with many laws and beginning to understand the methodical process of running a country through good governance principles. The constitution and the laws really do matter to everyone. Education and knowledge are indeed powers that can be used to empower.”
The School of Continuing Education and Life Long Learning (Scell) will offer the course again, starting on August 4 and ending September 22. Van der Waals-Wyatt and Smith recommend this course to every citizen, but especially to persons who are considering running for office. “New politicians as well as the seasoned politicians would certainly benefit from this good governance course,” they said.