Ousted politicians cost the treasury 1 million in 2013

POSTED: 01/16/14 2:56 PM

St. Maarten – Nine former ministers received more than 1 million guilders in political pension last year. Former Finance Minister Hiro Shigemoto collected 19.5 percent of the total – as bit more than 202,000 guilders. Former Minister of Education, Culture, Youth and Sports Rhoda Arrindell collected almost 190,000 guilders. For both ministers, the pension payments stop at the end of this month. Later this year, Shigemoto will have to stand trial for forgery, fraud, and money laundering.

Politicians are entitled to a pension if they have to leave office before their term runs out. The duration of the payments depend on the time they have been in office. The pension gradually decreases to 70 percent of a politician’s former remuneration. Income from paid work is deducted from the pension payments. The information about the pension payments stems from answers to questions MPs posed during Monday’s Central committee meeting.

Former Minister of Tourism, Economic Affairs, Transport and Telecommunication Franklyn Meyers collected the same amount in political pension as Rhoda Arrindell, and for him, the payments also stop at the end of this month.

UP-leader Theo Heyliger, who lost his position in the cabinet when the first Wescot-Williams government fell in 2012, collected close to 159,000, but his monthly payments of more than 15,000 guilders stopped on October 1 of last year when he returned to parliament.

The pensions for former Minister of Education, Culture, Youth and Sports Silveria Jacobs and for former Finance Minister Roland Tuitt end on June 30 of this year. So far, Jacobs has collected 71,500 guilders and Tuitt received 82,600 guilders.

Three other former politicians received an advance on their pensions. UP-MP Ruth Douglass, who left parliament to make place for party leader Heyliger, received 55,400 guilders; her pension will continue until September 30, 2015.

Richard Panneflek’s political pension ends at the end of this month. He received an advance of 29,300 guilders so far. Henriette Doran-York, like Panneflek a former deputy minister plenipotentiary, collected a 56,700 guilders advance payment in 2013. Her pension-payments will end on May 31 of this year.


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