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Soualiga Newsday Latest News (2108)

48-Year Old Arrested Under Suspicion of Sexual Abuse

PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten - Early Wednesday morning, June 11, the 48-year old man E.Y. was arrested in his home in Defiance. A house search, led by the judge of instruction and in presence of the public prosecutor took place. Several data carriers were confiscated for further investigation.

The suspect was arrested and place in pre-trail detention on suspicion of sexual abuse and rape. Several minor victims pressed charges against the suspect. As a coach of a sports team, the suspect took care of children.

The detective department of KPSM is now doing further research. In connection with the investigation no further announcements or comments will be made. (Public Prosecutors Office)


Prime Minister Wescot-Williams Holds Courtesy Meeting with Consul General and Vice Consul of Suriname

PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten - The Prime Minister of St. Maarten the Honorable Sarah Wescot-Williams received a courtesy visit from the Consul General of the Republic of Suriname for Curacao, St. Maarten and the Caribbean Netherlands Delano Winston Dennis Braam and Vice Consul Nelly S. Latchmansing. During the meeting various items were discussed of interest to both countries and Surinamese residents living in Suriname. (Contributed by the Cabinet of the Prime Minister)


Plenary Session of Parliament for Thursday about the Airport

PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten – The public plenary session of the House of Parliament about the Princess Juliana International Airport is now scheduled for Thursday.

The plenary session for June 12 is set for 2.00pm in the General Assembly Chamber of the House at Wilhelmina Straat #1 in Philipsburg.

The agenda point is about developments at the Princess Juliana International Airport. The meeting regarding this agenda point was adjourned on May 19, 2014 and is reconvened for June 12.

This meeting was requested by Members of Parliament (MP) Hon. William Marlin, MP Hon. George Pantophlet, MP Hon. Hyacinth Richardson, and MP Hon. Louie Laveist.

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

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


Rotary Mid Isle Changes Board

LITTLE BAY, Sint Maarten - Rotary St. Maarten Mid Isle held its Change of Board ceremony on Saturday June 7, 2014 in the Toucan Restaurant at the Divi Little Bay Hotel. Half of the proceeds raised at this event will go towards the international “End Polio” campaign. The other half will go towards local projects on St. Maarten.

The ceremony was well attended by representatives of various other rotary clubs on the island.

Immediate Past President Sanjay Surtani thanked all the members for their contributions to our community through Rotary in the past year. He mentioned the many projects that have taken place and the funds that were raised to assist various entities with their community work. Special mention was made of Mid Isle’s signature project the annual Spelling Bee which will be sponsored primarily by Scotia Bank this year.

Rotarian Sanjay Surtani congratulated the new president Wayne Wilkie.

In his address, Rotarian Wayne Wilkie spoke about how much he loves Rotary and his Rotary family at Mid Isle. He also indicated that he would be continuing with the signature projects this rotary year. Additionally there were new projects proposed in order to raise funds and Mid Isle will continue to invite guests from various organizations to give short informative lectures to the members in order to keep them informed of what is happening on the island.


Interact club of St. Dominic High School Raise Funds to End Polio

SOUTH REWARD, Sint Maarten - Rotary International is dedicated to ending polio from this world. Rotary members wordwide have perservered in this fight since 1979 and have helped eradicate polio in all but three countries wordwide.

Interact club of St. Dominic has recently joined in this fight and has raised funds for polio via the world's greatest meal to end polio

(For more information on how you can help Rotary to fight against Polio please email us at  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)



PM Reaffirms Commitment to Collaborate with region at Caribbean Week in New York

NEW YORK, SINT MAARTEN - St. Maarten Prime Minister the Honorable Sarah Wescot-Williams’ attendance at Caribbean Week meetings and events in New York last week was a resounding highlight for other attendees, ministers and directors of tourism from other nations and journalists from across the North American region.  Her presence and her statements reaffirmed St. Maarten’s commitment to collaborating with the other nations of the Caribbean region on tourism and social issues.

The Prime Minister highlighted the region’s common goals as it relates to tourism and its potential to be a driver for regional cooperation: “Tourism is a strong thread of the blanket that stretches across the Caribbean and tourism is becoming more and more of a social development tool,” the Prime Minister told reporters at a special briefing.

The PM also attended special sessions, ministerial meetings, awards ceremonies for travel writers and the annual Media Marketplace in which more than 130 journalists from around the world gathered to meet with Caribbean tourism officials and hoteliers. 

Caribbean Week in New York is an annual weeklong series of meetings and events, both public and private, in which the Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) conducts its business discussing internal regional issues as well as promoting the region to the public in the Caribbean’s number one source market.

During the special media briefing called “View from the Top” and arranged by CTO for Prime Minister Wescot-Williams, The PM was able to meet with a select group of reporters to talk about St. Maarten’s tourism outlook as well as reaffirm her strong belief in collaboration with other Caribbean nations.

Attending the special “View from the Top” were reporters and editors from Travel + Leisure magazine, Bloomberg News, Travel Weekly, Caribbean Journal, Travel Agent Magazine, TravAlliance publications, The Washington Diplomat and Caribbean Media Corp.

“We should look at tourism as a tool for social development in St. Maarten and across the Caribbean.  Economic issues have forced us to look at ways and means of getting together and we are working collaboratively with our other Caribbean nations to mitigate the effects of climate change as well as social issues of unemployment, crime and health,” stated Wescot-Williams during the press conference. The PM, in answering a series of questions from a variety of the reporters present, stated that:  “If we in St. Maarten want to remain on the cutting edge in the global tourism arena we have to invest in our infrastructure.

“We also need to be more than a seasonal destination and expand on our green initiatives. We need to look at the reasons for the seasonality and make St. Maarten a year-round destination by finding new source markets.”

Prime Minister Wescot-Williams also noted that St. Maarten has approved a new energy policy to incorporate green initiatives.

The Prime Minister went on to say: “We need to continuously explore what the cruise passengers are looking for when they visit St. Maarten on their brief stops and explore how we can entice them to come back as stayover visitors.

“Air lift remains an issue for St. Maarten and the entire Caribbean and is always a topic on the agenda for all the islands.”

Wescot-Williams concluded by stating that the larger percentage of Caribbean countries depend on tourism and “we need to be able to show our people how tourism can help with unemployment and assist with other areas of social development.  We need to show our residents the link between tourism and a better economic and social life. Tourism cannot be seen as a silo, but must be seen as one of the main economic drivers for most of the Caribbean nations.”

Over the several days in New York, Prime Minister Wescot-Williams participated in several other interviews with reporters and local television and online networks. (From the Cabinet of the Prime Minister)


Super Hero Children at St. Martin Book Fair on Saturday

GREAT BAY/MARIGOT, St. Martin - All Children, ages four to 12, are invited to “In The Children’s Room” at the 12th annual St. Martin Book Fair, Saturday, June 7, from 9 AM to 1 PM, University of St. Martin, Room 101, said Jacqueline Sample, president of House of Nehesi Publishers (HNP).

Entrance to all workshops of the three-day book fair is free for everyone.     

Nzinga Lake is the coordinator of this year’s Children’s Room. “I’m asking parents and guardians who would like their child or children to be in the Children’s Room to bring their boys and girls dressed as the child’s favorite super hero,” said Lake.

The marketing graduate of St. Thomas University is well known for her creative and successful children and teen pageants; and fashion-oriented calendars showcasing aspiring models. Lake is also president of St. Maarten Small Properties Association and a Chamber of Commerce board member, said Sample.

Lake will be assisted by Riegnald Bakari Arrindell, costumed as Marvel Comics’ Black Panther. Arrindell is a St. Peters community organizer of children’s matinees and other family-oriented activities.

Over the years, the Children’s Room has including storytelling, games, and songs. Storytelling may be in various languages and popular storyteller Papa Umpo and other artists have been known to appear as “surprise” guest performers, said Sample.

The hair workshop also returns to book fair Saturday at USM, from 11 AM to 12:30 noon, said its coordinator Rochelle Ward (Faizah). “Partners in Crime: Going Natural & Staying Natural” is the name of the workshop that addresses “challenges and joys of caring for or returning to the natural beauty and vibrant health of your own hair. Workshop leader Dr. Erica Reid (Ewurama) will listen to your concerns, offer solutions, discuss, and demonstrate hair care techniques and products,” said Ward. Dr. Reid, is a hair products developer and author from Beautiful Earth Natural Salon & Spa in Jamaica.

Among the 13 workshops on Saturday is the media workshop, conducted by Ece Temelkuran. The award-winning journalist, media rights activist, and author from Turkey recently delivered the Freedom Lecture in Amsterdam. Temelkuran will discuss her real and frightening life experiences with “Crime&Punishment,” media resistance to intimidation from her country’s prime minister and military; the murder not long ago of one journalist and the jailing of two others in an attempt to silence the media, said book fair coordinator Shujah Reiph.

“Recognizing mental illnesses at home and in relationships” could never be a one-stop talk but a good workshop can provide expert, helpful ideas with Dr. Balin A. Durr, M.D. The child, adolescent, and adult psychiatrist from Chicago will conduct the mental health workshop at USM on Saturday morning. She is also a poet and author. Dr. Durr uses a holistic/collaborative approach to mind-body wellness that incorporates nutrition and traditional and alternative medicine. Currently, she provides psychiatric care in Illinois via tele-psychiatry (seeing patients via camera and television), said Reiph.

“Writing French’ in St. Martin, Caribbean” is another Saturday workshop. It takes place at the Chamber of Commerce Building, Spring Concordia, Marigot, between 9 AM – 10:30 AM. Nicole Cage, educator, poet, author from Martinique will lead the workshop that looks at how “in multilingual St. Martin, where the traditional or historical nation language in English, writing poetry, drama, fiction (short stories, novels), and essays in French could be a daunting challenge,” said Sample. This workshop could be considered an immersion exercise where Cage “will help guide you with unique examples and tips toward achieving your goal of confidently writing creative material in French.” The workshop language is French. Cage is versed in English, Kwéyòl, and Spanish.

After bringing their kids to the Children’s Room mothers and fathers can have time for themselves at the “eBook for Better Parenting” workshop. Rodney Davis, a St. Martin social worker and parenting educator, will conduct the Saturday session at USM. He will look at how young and older parents can use new communication and media technologies for better parenting. This workshop draws on parenting expertise, lifecoach practices, and social research to connect parents, and parents-to-be, with effective uses of the new media in their daily parenting, said Davis.

Conscious Lyrics Foundation and HNP are the organizers of the 12th edition of the St. Martin Book Fair, in collaboration with St. Maarten Tourist Bureau, University of St. Martin, LCF Foundation, and St. Martin Tourist Office. The SXM Airport and SOS Radio are sponsors of the St. Martin Book Fair 2014. For more Book Fair activities, see The theme of the 2014festival is “Crime&Punishment.” 


Civil registry department staff undergoes training

GREAT BAY, Sint Maarten (DCOMM) – Head of the Civil Registry Department Leona Marlin-Romeo, said on Wednesday that the Front Office and The Back Office is undergoing two separate studies that are job related, namely the BOBZ (Basic Administration Studies on the Civil Registry) and MLOBZ (In-depth Studies on the Civil Registry).

Both courses are being given by Albert Schut and Ger Lutter two experts from Sensor Bestuur of the Netherlands. 

They are preparing the staff for the exams that were developed and will be given by the NVVB (The Netherlands Organization of Civil Registries).  These exams were custom made according to the laws of Sint Maarten, but are on the same level of that of what is taken in the Netherlands. 

Once successfully taken the staff of the Civil Registry Department will have a diploma that has value, this differs significantly from a certificate of attendance.  Having the staff take part in these studies has been one of the goals of the management of the department. 

The former Netherlands Antilles and as an extension Sint Maarten has always been at a disadvantage because the necessary tools for the staff of the Civil Registry were non-existent. 

The Civil Registry of Sint Maarten was faced with staff that lacked in-depth knowledge on the work/tasks and responsibilities of the Civil Registry and the qualifications to execute the tasks involved. 

This was quite a major disadvantage when comparing to the colleagues in the Netherlands who have the opportunities to take job related courses that will give them a diploma instead of a certificate.  

The Management of the Civil Registry department is proud to finally have this available and this was made possible through the funding of USONA. 


TelEm Group joins PM in support of youth soccer program for country schools

POND ISLAND, Sint Maarten – TelEm Group’s involvement in youth sports has been praised by youth soccer sports organizers and Prime Minister Mrs. Sarah Wescott-Williams.

Speaking at the recent ending of the finals of this year’s Interscholastic Soccer Tournament, at the Johan Cruijff Center in Belvedere, the Prime Minister stressed on the positive benefits of sports in the community and the encouragement that is due to those who make it happen.

The Prime Minister was especially pleased to see the large number of parents and supporters who turned out for the games each week and at the finals and she thanked the many sponsors, including TelEm Group, for supporting the work of the event organizers, the St. Maarten Soccer Education Foundation (SMSEF).

 SMSEF member, Mr. David Forsythe, said the youth soccer program for schools is continuing to grow with exciting new plans for the future.

“There is still a lot to be done and a lot of financial support is required if we are do all that we possibly can for the schools and their school soccer programs,” said Mr. Forsythe.

He said the past year has seen a number of donations of equipment and sports gear from overseas organizations and group who have remained in contact with the Foundation.

‘We are most grateful to these sponsors, but most of all to our local corporate sponsors such as TelCell without whom we could not be as ambitious as we are,” said the SMSEF executive officer.

TelEm Group Chief Commercial officer (CCO) Mr. Brian Mingo agreed with the Prime Minister 100 per cent when she urged the young soccer stars to continue practicing so that they can one day be part of a future international St. Maarten soccer team.

“We saw some great talent on the field over the several months of the tournament. Thanks to the work of the St. Maarten Soccer Education Foundation that raw talent is being exposed in a very positive way, and we very much like being a part of that as a corporate sponsor,” said Mr. Mingo.


Regional health agencies urge vaccination against measles and rubella if travelling to 2014 FIFA World Cup

PAHO/WHO, Sint Maarten – During the launching of the 12th annual Vaccination Week in the Americas, the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO) urged people to protect themselves against measles, rubella and other vaccine-preventable diseases, in view of the upcoming FIFA World Cup in Brazil and the need to protect achievements in disease elimination in the Americas.

Intensified international travel and population movement associated with mass events such as the World Cup increase the risk of imported cases of measles, rubella and other vaccine-preventable diseases. For this reason, PAHO/WHO is calling on travellers to make sure they are up to date on their vaccines and, if not, to get vaccinated against measles and rubella at least two weeks before traveling.

The theme of this year’s initiative was, “Vaccination: Your best shot!”, is a call to action for people to protect themselves against vaccine-preventable diseases in the lead-up to the FIFA World Cup, which is expected to attract some 600,000 visitors from around the world. Of the 32 countries with teams participating in the World Cup, 19 reported measles cases in 2013.

In the Americas, endemic transmission of measles was interrupted in 2002 and transmission of rubella in 2009. However, measles continues to circulate elsewhere in the world, and some countries in the Americas have reported imported cases.

“Vaccination Week in the Americas has been instrumental in our region’s becoming the first in the world to eliminate measles and rubella,” said PAHO Director Carissa F. Etienne. “These viruses continue to circulate in other regions of the world. The risk of reintroduction of these diseases is especially high during mass-attendance events such as the 2014 World Cup. Getting vaccinated against measles and rubella is your best shot to protect yourself, your family and all the people of the Americas.”

The countries of the Americas have been world leaders in the elimination or reduction of vaccine-preventable diseases. The region was the first to eradicate smallpox (in 1971) and to eliminate polio (in 1991). Diseases such as diphtheria, tetanus and whooping cough have been significantly reduced, thanks to vaccination rates that average 93% among children under 1 year.

Vaccination Week in the Americas began in 2003 as part of a regional response to the last endemic outbreak of measles in the Americas, on the border of Venezuela and Colombia in 2002. Since then, the initiative has taken the benefits of vaccines to more than 465 million people of all ages.

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