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Soualiga News II (4169)

TelEm Group to continue internet maintenance work Friday

POND ISLAND – TelEm Group has announced that it will be carrying out the second in  a  series of maintenance works on the company’s DSL internet services Friday.

The maintenance works began last Friday with adjustments to the Internet Service Provider’s (ISP) server network.

This Friday, technical and engineering staff will be carrying out various maintenance tasks on software and hardware systems between 12:00 midnight and 6 :00 am Saturday morning. As a result of the work, no internet services connected on the DSL network infrastructure will be available to customers..

According to TelEm Group Chief Technical Officer (CTO), Mr. Eldert Louisa,  due to the increasing use of streaming applications and devices using services such as Netflex, Ruku and others requires important equipment tweaking and changes  in order to guarantee qaulity internet services.

He said TelEm Group is in the process of building a brand new high-speed DSL internet backbone network, which will better facilitate customer demand for the foreseeable future..

The maintenance project is being coordinated by Manager, Engineering and Planning, Mr. Jed Carty, who says the  new internet backbone network requires the series of maintenance works that began last week to make the present network stable and have it functioning more efficiently while his team develop the new network.

« Mr. Louisa and Mr. Carty have  meantime apologized to customers and members of the public for the interruption in service caused by these maintenance windows.

« We are carrying out the works during hours of least impact to minimize the effect on our customers as much as possible, » they said. (TelEm)

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Central Committee Meeting scheduled for Friday regarding Non-payment of bills by SZV and Government for health care

PHILIPSBURG – The Central Committee of Parliament will meet in public session on January 30 at the request of the National Alliance (NA) faction.

The Central Committee meeting is set for Friday at 10.00am in the General Assembly Chamber of the House at Wilhelmina Straat #1 in Philipsburg.

The agenda for the meeting is the non-payment of bills by the Social Health Insurance (SZV); the non-payment of premiums by Government to the SZV, and the consequences to health care in the country.

This meeting has been requested by NA Members of Parliament (MP) Hon. Silveria Jacobs, MP Hon. William Marlin, and MP Hon. Christophe Emmanuel.

Members of the public are invited to the House of Parliament to attend parliamentary deliberation. 

The House of Parliament is located across from the Court House in Philipsburg.

The parliamentary session will be carried live on St. Maarten Cable TV Channel 120, via Pearl Radio FM 98.1, the audio via the Internet www.pearlfmradio.com, and also via www.sxmparliament.org

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Tourism destinations need to find balanced sustainable growth

CUL DE SAC - There is some discussion related to the well-known Emilio Wilson Estate which has been purchased by Government back in December for a sum of Naf.30 million. 

Rainforest Adventures has shown interests in developing part of the property according to media reports for an eco-tourism project.

Its environmental footprint seemingly will be very minimal while the majority of the estate will be left alone.  The project entails a zip-line to the top of Sentry Hill among other things.

Rainforest Adventures has a number of eco-tourism businesses in other countries namely: Costa Rica, Panama, Jamaica, and St. Lucia.

Rainforest Adventures aims to protect the tropical rain forests while offering world-class eco-tourism and nature excursion.  According to its website: “We promote environmental consciousness, and conserve endangered natural resources through innovative educational experiences in order to create a world-class sustainable tourism experience.”

The Emilio Wilson Estate offers a lot as it is rich in heritage and culture.  It is also an area where families can hold events. 

Cultural, heritage and environmental organizations should come together and offer ideas with respect to what they would like to see happen to the property.   

Tourism destinations such as ours are forced to remain ahead, and at the same time be innovative and creative in offering new tours for visitors.  One of the things missing is heritage and cultural tourism.  We need to promote this aspect of Sint Maarten/Saint Martin.  Our heritage and history are rich, unique and we should promote this in a sustainable manner.

Puerto Rico is one tourism destination that sees the importance of offering something different and also keeping ahead of competition.

Puerto Rico has now created the first nature reserve trail for blind people.  This is a niche travel market that the destination sees an opportunity to cater to this type of traveller.  The trails feature QR codes where people can listen to information about the reserve in the south eastern coastal town of Maunabo.  The Puerto Rico Government has also purchased special wheel chairs for people with physical impediments who also want to explore and enjoy the nature reserve.

It would be in the interests of all concerned to come together with respect to the Emilio Wilson Park and look at the various opportunities that exist and find a balanced sustainable way to continue to develop the tourism sector for generations to come.    

Commentary: Roddy Heyliger

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Residents in Need of Police Assistance can Call Community Police Officers

PHILIPSBURG - The Police Department is announcing to persons in the communities of Middle Region, Sucker Garden, Madame Estate, Lower Princess Quarter, Oyster Pond, Over the Pond, Mary’s Fancy, Saunders and Betty’s Estate, who are in need of police assistance, can call the Community Police Officers (C.P.O.).

The C.P.O’s. are Inspector Helen Romeo (Cell phone 588-2932) and Inspector Arcella Leonard (Cell phone 588-4037) are available weekly from Monday to Friday from 10.00 a.m. to 02.00 p.m. The C.P.O. office is located in the building of the Justice Academy on the A. Th. Illidge road (Mount William Hill.)  (Police Force Sint Maarten)

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46-YEAR OLD FEMALE SERIOUSLY INJURED IN TRAFFIC ACCIDENT

CAY HILL - On Tuesday at approximately 09.45 a.m. the police traffic department was sent to the Link One to investigate a traffic accident between a female cyclist and a car and whereby the cyclist suffered serious injuries.

On arrival at the scene the victim had already been treated by paramedics and then transported to the Sint Maarten Medical Center for further treatment. The 46 year old victim was immediately operated due to the severity of her wounds.

According to the results done by the investigating officers, the victim was riding her bicycle from the round-a-bout on the Cole Bay Hill towards the One Te Te Loke round-a-bout, while the motor vehicle was traveling in the opposite direction.

In the corner in the vicinity of Chopin road, the victim, for still unknown reasons lost control of her bike and collided with the oncoming traffic and fell to the ground. The driver immediately stopped his vehicle to avoid riding over the victim.

The victim luckily was wearing a helmet which definitely helped in saving her life. This case is still under investigation by the traffic department. 

The police department strongly recommends that all cyclists wear a helmet while operating a bicycle, motorcycle or scooter. The life you save might be yours. (Police Force Sint Maarten)

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Appeals Court to handle case of those convicted for the murder of Member of Parliament Wiels

WILLEMSTAD – The appeal in the case involving the assassination of Curacao Member of Parliament (MP) Helmin Wiels known as Magnus, will come before the Court of Appeals from January 28 to 31.  The ruling on the case will take place February 20.

The Magnus case involves those who were convicted for the murder of the Curacao MP.

Security for the case will be tight and limited access to the court house.  Members of the public will be able to follow the case from another room via video feed.

MP Wiels was assassinated on May 5, 2013.  

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Court case of Curacao’s former Prime Minister to be heard in pre-trial review March 20

WILLEMSTAD – The case of Curacao’s former Prime Minister and now current leader of the Opposition Party MLK in the Parliament of Curacao Hon. Member of Parliament (MP) Gerrit Schotte, will be presented in a pre-trial review on March 20, according to the Curacao Public Prosecution Service.

MP Schotte is being accused of committing fraud, forgery and money laundering.  The case is known as Babel.  MP Schotte’s partner Cicely van der Dijs is also part of the case.

The Curacao Public Prosecution Service reported that they have not completed their investigation.

The case was to have been heard on January 16 but was postponed.

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Plenary Session of Parliament scheduled for Tuesday on Draft 2015 National Budget

PHILIPSBURG – ThePlenary session of Parliament regarding the draft 2015 budget will take place in a public session on January 27.

The Central Committee phase has been completed and the next and final phase is the plenary session which is set for Tuesday at 9.00am in the General Assembly Chamber of the House at Wilhelmina Straat #1 in Philipsburg.

Members of the public are invited to the House of Parliament to attend parliamentary deliberation. 

The draft 2015 National Budget is set at Naf.445.000.000 with investments and capital goods set at Naf.111.031.451.

The House of Parliament is located across from the Court House in Philipsburg.

The parliamentary session will be carried live on St. Maarten Cable TV Channel 120, via Pearl Radio FM 98.1, the audio via the Internet www.pearlfmradio.com, and also via www.sxmparliament.org

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Rotary Awareness Month - Rotary on the Move

PHILIPSBURG - January is Rotary Awareness month. All Rotary clubs worldwide use this month to highlight their clubs and their projects and to talk to the community about how Rotary can be of assistance to them.

Rotary Club of St. Maarten Mid Isle has embarked on a campaign to have its members wear their Rotary shirts on the last two Fridays in the month of January to create awareness for Rotary.

Members have posted pictures on Facebook promoting Rotary on their jobs and with everyone they have come in contact with throughout the day. They have already received lots of positive feedback from the community as many people ask about Rotary after seeing the shirts.

Rotary Club of St. Maarten Mid Isle meets every Tuesday evening at 7:30 PM at Mary's Boone. visit www.facebook.com/rotarysxmmidisle

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