Soualiga News 4

Soualiga News 4 (2024)

Police officer to be laid to rest with honors on Monday

ST. PETERS - Police officer Moceda Deann Egen who passed away on Saturday November 14th 2015 will be laid to rest with highest honors on Monday November 23rd 2015. As part of the ceremony, at 10.00 a.m. the body of the late Moceda Egen will be escorted by police from the Emerald Funeral Home in Cay Hill to Philipsburg for her last visit at the Philipsburg Police Head Quarters.  

At the police station a full uniformed honor guard will be awaiting her arrival. Family members who will be accompanying M. Egen will then enter the police station and in the presence of the police management team hang a picture of Mrs. Egen among those of other fallen colleagues of the police force. In connection with this ceremony traffic will be closed on the E. Camille Richardson Street for approximately 30 minutes.

At approximately 10.20 a.m. the procession will leave the police station and escorted to the Good News Baptist Church on Sint Peter’s road where the body could be viewed and where the continuation of the ceremony and church service will take place.

During the church service traffic on this road will be diverted to get into and out of Sint Peters.

All drivers are advised to take good note of this information and use alternative routes to avoid any unnecessary inconvenience or delays. (Police Force Sint Maarten)


Road closures on Monday in connection with funeral of VKS Officer

ST. PETERS/CUL DE SAC, (DCOMM) – Ministry of Public Housing, Environment, Spatial Development and Infrastructure (Ministry VROMI), hereby announces that in connection with the funeral of Voluntary Corps of Sint Maarten Officer Moceda Beana Egen on Monday, 23 November, there will be several road closures.

The funeral will take place on Monday at the Good News Baptist Church, St. Peters Road, St. Peters.  The service will begin at 1.00pm.  Interment will be at the Cul de Sac Cemetery.

The following roads will be closed off with barricades: Apricot and Sugar Apple Road; Ball field/Gladiola Road intersection; Zagersgut/Bush Road intersection; Welgelegen Road/Brouwers Road intersection.

Motorists are advised to pay keen attention to the barricades when driving through the district.


MP Tamara Leonard requests info on Labega case from Prime Minister

PHILIPSBURG--United People's (UP) party Member of Parliament (MP) Tamara Leonard has sent a letter to Prime Minister Marcel Gumbs requesting on "thorough and a step-by-step explanation of the process of screening and other procedures related to Princess Juliana International Airport Managing Director Regina Labega.

Leonard urged the Prime Minister to provide the requested information "as soon as possible or at the latest within one week of the date of this letter." The letter was booked with Parliament for forwarding to the Prime Minister on Monday.

In her letter, Leonard asked for "a thorough explanation of the procedures and facts" related to the case.

"There has been much talk and speculation in the community about this matter and I believe it is high time the entire procedure, from its inception to date, be explained in detail for a better understanding and awareness," Leonard said.

She wants to be informed of, among the other details, whether or not the screening of the Managing Director was stipulated by law. If yes, which laws and what was the procedure followed. If no, why and on whose authority was the screening carried out.

"Also, outline in the explanation why the certificate that must be issued by the Prime Minister to Ms. Labega as a person of confidence was reportedly withheld and on what grounds, if such is indeed true," she wrote.

The MP also wants to also know the role of the airport’s boards (both of the Holding Company and Operating Company) in the screening process and subsequent handling of the position of the Managing director.

She cautioned the Prime Minister in the letter that she requires a thorough and step-by-step explanation of the process regarding Labega and "not only answer to the specific questions posed in this correspondence."


Official Police Report: Four suspects arrested during house searches. Search also carried out on Statia

SINT MAARTEN/ST. EUSTATIUS - A search team consisting of members from the Royal Marechassee, the R.S.T., the Customs, the Police Department and the Public Prosecutors Office jointly carried searches in four buildings under the suspicion of human trafficking. The building consisted of one erotic club and three dwellings.

Three main suspects have been arrested under the suspicion of the exploitation of mainly women from the Dominican Republic. A fourth suspect was later arrested for fire-arm possession. Thus far four suspects have arrested and more arrests are not excluded.

A total of six fire-arms, documents, cash and digital equipment have been confiscated for further investigation. On the island of Sint Eustatius a similar search was done at an erotic club which has ties to the suspects involved in this case.

The suspects remain in custody for further investigation. (Police Force Sint Maarten)


Educational institutions on St. Eustatius, Saba and Bonaire are achieving basic quality

CARIBBEAN NETHERLANDS - There are another five elementary schools, one school for secondary education, two expertise centres education care and one institution for social opportunity pathways for the young (SKJ) in the Caribbean Netherlands (Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba) which achieved basic quality.

This was established by the inspectors of the Education Inspectorate’s Caribbean Netherlands team following quality inspections which they performed on St. Eustatius, Saba and Bonaire during the past two weeks.

State Secretary Sander Dekker (Education) reacts with pleasure: “The teachers, school leaders and school boards of these schools have produced a remarkable performance. The pupils at their schools now receive the good education to which they are entitled. The good education that is so important for the future of Caribbean Netherlands. This deserves a huge compliment! “

Basic quality was achieved by:

  • The Bethel Methodist School, the Lynch Plantation SDA School and the Expertise Centre Education Care (ECE) on St. Eustatius;
  • The Sacred Heart School, the secondary education programme of the Saba Comprehensive School, the Expertise Center Education Care EC2 and the Saba Reach Foundation on Saba;
  • Kolegio Rayo di Solo and Kolegio Kristu Bon Wardador on Bonaire.

Achieving basic quality concerns the educational learning process and the quality care. The learning achievements do not yet equal the level of the European Netherlands: this is a matter which requires commitment for the longer term.

More and more schools in the Caribbean Netherlands manage to raise their education to a sufficient level. Educational institutions which achieved basic quality at an earlier stage are Fundashon Forma (social opportunity pathways for the young) and elementary schools De Pelikaan, Kolegio San Bernardo and Kolegio San Luis Bertran on Bonaire and the Golden Rock School (primary education) on St. Eustatius.

This means that currently 9 of the 12 schools for primary education, 1 of the 3 schools for secondary education, 2 of the 3 Expertise Centres Education Care and 2 of the 3 institutions for social opportunity pathways for the young have achieved basic quality.

The criteria for basic quality have been laid down in policy documents on basic quality in education. Achieving basic quality is an important objective of the Education Agenda for the Dutch Caribbean, which has been adopted for the 2011-2016 period. (RCN Caribbean Netherlands)


Letter of education minister to Caribbean Netherlands graduates

CARIBBEAN NETHERLANDS - Caribbean Netherlands (Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba) graduates of the vwo, havo and mbo-4 programmes received a letter last week from Minister Jet Bussemaker of Education, Culture and Science [Onderwijs, Cultuur en Wetenschap (OCW)]. The letter contained important information about the choice of study, registration at higher education institutions and Studiefinanciering.

In the letter the prospective students are strongly recommended to properly inform themselves about the available training courses and the admission requirements. The letter also contains information about student finance, for studies both in the region and in The Netherlands. It discusses the choice of study check for prospective students in The Netherlands and the assistance in The Netherlands. The letter also makes reference to important websites such as that of RCN Studiefinanciering www.rijksdienstcn/com/onderwijs/studiefinanciering  and

The letter has been distributed on all three islands of the Caribbean Netherlands via careers and study advisers and is also intended for parents. A Papiamentu translation was enclosed on Bonaire and an English translation on Saba and St. Eustatius. The full letter, in all three languages, can be read via the website of RCN Studiefinanciering:

(RCN Caribbean Netherlands)



THE CARIBBEAN - The Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA) is raising the global profile of Caribbean Travel Marketplace providing opportunities for hoteliers attending the event to find new contacts and sources of business. CHTA is targeting wholesalers in Latin America and emerging destinations as well as tour operators specializing in niche markets. Caribbean Travel Marketplace is scheduled Jan. 21-23, 2016 at the Atlantis, Paradise Island in The Bahamas.


Building upon the existing and longstanding portfolio of global operators conducting business in the Caribbean, CHTA is focusing on securing the participation of Latin American tour operators in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Panama, Peru and Venezuela and emerging destinations Russia, India, Scandinavia, Ukraine and the Middle East.


With the growth and importance of the niche travel segments to its membership, CHTA is inviting niche tour operators to attend Caribbean Travel Marketplace. CHTA is working with National Hotel and Tourism Associations across the Caribbean to identify and attract tour operator representatives from top niche markets for the region.


"We look forward to bringing Caribbean Travel Marketplace back to The Bahamas in 2016 as an event that will expand the Caribbean brand globally with the introduction of new tour operators to our region's diverse hospitality product," said Emil Lee, President of CHTA.

Buyer-Supplier Appointments


Buyers and suppliers who register for Caribbean Travel Marketplace can now request their appointments with each other through the CHTA website. In 2015, buyers and supplier companies pre-scheduled 11,888 appointments. Appointment-taking delegates can submit preferences through 4 p.m. Dec. 29, 2015. Delegates are encouraged to prioritize their appointment requests as scheduling is based on priority. Once finalized, appointment-taking delegates will receive notification to view the schedule online in The Passport

Educational Seminars


CHTA has expanded the program schedule to include "Revenue Maximizing" sessions aimed at increasing revenue for hotels and Caribbean travel suppliers through supplemental revenue options, increased bookings and yield-management strategies. The sessions will commence on Jan. 21, prior to the official opening ceremony.


"The seminars offered at Caribbean Travel Marketplace will complement revenue-generating opportunities and maximize the impact of one-on-one meetings, while providing tips on the latest market trends," Lee noted.


CHTA will also host the Leadership Conference for hotel association executives Jan. 18-19 and the committee and Board of Directors meetings Jan. 20-21, all at the Atlantis, Paradise Island.



In addition to CHTA, Caribbean Travel Marketplace 2016 is staged by The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism, Paradise Island Promotion Board and The Bahamas Hotel & Tourism Association, along with host sponsors Interval International and MasterCard; platinum sponsors Adara Media, AMResorts, Bonnier Corp., OBMI, Tambourine and Travelzoo; and gold sponsors AskMe Inc., Best Western International, Blue Group Media - Time Inc., BRIDES and, Condé Nast Traveler, The Knot, Simpleview, The New York Times, Travel Channel and Travel Click.


Companies interested in learning more about sponsorship opportunities should contact Matt Cooper, chief marketing officer, via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or(305) 443-3040.


10 Permanent/Ad Hoc Committee Meetings scheduled for Thursday for the appointment of Chair and Vice Chair

PHILIPSBURG – There will be 10 Permanent/Ad Hoc Committee meetings of Parliament on November 12th.      

The Committee meetings are set for Thursday, starting at 3.30pm with the last committee scheduled to start at 5.00pm in the General Assembly Chamber of the House at Wilhelmina Straat #1 in Philipsburg.

The agenda for all committee meetings of Parliament is the appointment of the Chair person and Vice Chair.  Each committee will meet in session for 10 minutes. 

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.


MP Lake calls on Caretaker Cabinet to increase USM subsidy in 2016 Budget

ST. PETERS - MP Maurice Lake wants the caretaker Cabinet of Prime Minister Marcel Gumbs to live up to its promise and increase the subsidy for University of St. Martin (USM) in the country’s 2016 budget.

“It is time the UP-led Government stop playing politics with USM. One of my first priority goals within the UP-Governing Programme was to recognize and increase the subsidy for USM. The government needs to make this happen now,” said Lake.

“I don’t like the way the UP-led Government has been treating USM behind the scenes by not wanting to recognize them and increasing the full subsidy. I have written emails to the Leader of the UP Party and Government to no avail reminding them how disappointed I was. The late Dr. Wathey and Ambassador Ansary were the co-founders of the University and we need to recognize the University and increase its subsidy since it is only one per cent of the Education Budget which is one of the lowest subsidies given to a non-profit foundation. 

“I have encouraged the University Board and Management to give a presentation to the Education Committee of Parliament in front of the Minister of Education, to recognize, and increase the subsidy for USM in which the Minister promised to do for the University to get a jump start with promoting USM abroad and working towards accreditation. USM was recognized by the former Executive Council of St. Maarten but they need an updated letter stating they are recognized by the Government of St. Maarten after 10 10 10.

“For some reason Government didn't want to recognize the University like the former executive council, and had the Board and Management on hold for several months requesting several documents and change the MOU of a particular accredited University which I find ironic because the Minister of Education graduated from the University while the caretaker Minister of VROMI taught for years at the University.

“I told the Management of USM to let Government live up to their promise to recognize and increase the subsidy and stop being used for picture taking for political show.  USM has produce some of the best professionals in every sector in St. Maarten and the Caribbean.  The Board and Management need to step up to the plate and market USM and their alumni foundation success.

“I want to see the Caretaker Government live up to the former Minister of Education’s promise to increase the subsidy by 300.000 dollars instead of Naf.150.000 guilders in the draft budget 2016. I also would like to see Government donate the surrounding land by the Receiver's Office to USM for the expansion plan of the University to build more classes and dormitories to attract more students from the neighbouring islands. 

“It's high time, we make USM the highest learning institution on the island and in the Caribbean. Then we can say education is our number one priority instead of using the University as a political stunt,” MP Maurice Lake said in a press statement on Sunday.


Green Climate Fund approves first eight investments to combat climate change

INTERNATIONAL – Meeting ahead of the United Nations climate conference in Paris, the Green Climate Fund (GCF) Board, announced today that it approved $168 million of its funding for projects and programmes worth $624 million, marking the end of its launch phase and kick-starting the flow of climate finance to developing countries.

In a press release, the Fund’s Board, which has been meeting in Zambia this week, said these new activities will generate up to $1.3 billion in investments over the coming five years. It noted that this initial batch of projects cover mitigation and adaptation measures; three of them are located in Africa, three are in Asia-Pacific, and two in Latin America.

“Approving these first projects is an important milestone, particularly for GCF’s partnering entities and beneficiaries,” said Gabriel Quijandria Acosta, Co-Chair of the Board. “This first review of projects has been an enriching experience for the Board. It has allowed us to reflect on the areas that need to be further enhanced to speed up support to countries that are already experiencing the devastating impacts of climate change.”

With climate finance being a critical element of global climate talks taking place in Paris at the COP21 in less than four weeks, the GCF is highlighting that the approval of the first project proposals marks a “major trust-building measure between developing and developed countries.” Countries reportedly have called for GCF funding to be delivered at scale to finance their national climate targets (INDCs).

“We have come a long way to build the Green Climate Fund capacity completely from scratch over the last two years,” said Héla Cheikhrouhou, Executive Director of the Fund.

“I am delighted that we have reached all of the objectives set by the Board for this year, culminating in approving the first full funding applications,” she explained. “There are many more projects under development in GCF’s pipeline, and we are at last starting to deliver on our mission to advance the global response to climate change.”

The Green Climate Fund, which was set up by 194 governments party to UNFCCC was given the mandate to help keep the planet’s atmospheric temperature rise below 2 degrees Celsius.

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