Too close for comfortPOSTED: 08/29/14 2:34 AM
St. Maarten – Politicians are not top of the class when it comes to abiding by the rules and that is no secret. The general permit Justice Minister Dennis Richardson published on July 14 states for instance that it is prohibited to place campaign material at roundabouts. There has been quite some fuss over this rule, but in the end, most billboards were removed from those locations. Among those that keep flaunting the rules are the Executive Director of the Chamber of Commerce, Claret Connor (at the Belvedere roundabout) and Lenny Priest (at the Bush road roundabout).
The Democratic Party had placed a huge billboard at the Belvedere roundabout and it took intervention by the police before the party was convinced that it had to be removed. This happened a few days after party leader Sarah Wescot-Williams opined that the billboard “could not be considered to be standing around a roundabout” even though the structure was standing practically right on top of it.
Another rule: it is forbidden to place campaign material “on top of campaign material of another party.” Apparently the Democratic Party is playing semantics again with this rule, as this picture near the Prince Bernhard Bridge shows.
The DP flags are not literally “on top” of an UP- and an NA-billboard, but they are right in front of them. This way, the images of candidates Theo Heyliger and Arthur Lugisse disappear most of the time behind the flying flag of the “reinvigorated” Democratic Party. We guess this is just another little matter of integrity.