SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) – Leader of the People’s Progressive Alliance (PPA) Gracita Arrindell said in a statement on Sunday: “Happy New Year 2019 to Sint Maarten’s Citizens and to our valued visitors. The start of a new year is always a great opportunity to take stock of unfinished business. It’s also a great opportunity to lay out the cards for a brighter future.
“A future that includes a cleaner, dump-fire free, clean- air, traffic-less, greener, beautiful, cultured, safer, kinder, Sint Maarten. A new year to live up to our name ‘Friendly Island’.
“A new year that calls on our collective sense of duty and our aspirations as young Nation, especially with Nation building one-year shy of commemorating 101010 in 2020.”
Arrindell said: “Laying out a workable, transparent path for the People, requires boldness and guts to reject the policies of greed and self enrichment, derelict of duty and short-sighted ness. We must take more than the proverbial ‘New York’ minute to hold our elected and appointed officials accountable for their actions. Doing so will truly ring in a new era of accountability and transparency in our decision-making process.
“I sincerely believe this will be a win-win situation for all. The past year 2018 saw a tremendous effort of private initiative to rebuild after Hurricane Irma. Make no mistake, most people and business had to scramble to pull themselves up, while international and Dutch government financial and humanitarian aid came to the assistance of our citizens.
“We were hit extremely hard by Irma. Then came the construction chaos. This is a new year for our citizens to not shy away from expecting reasonable and fair, honest representation for your taxpaying money. Graciousness, starts at the top, supported by the bottom.
“The shoulders of our hard working and law-abiding people cannot continue to carry the weight of spineless ‘laissez faire’, let them do what they want decision-making”
“Gracita continues: “Our society looks forward to a year where stability, hard work, vision and result are the order of the day. The past year left many still wondering when to receive a clear path from government laying out the solutions for the housing situation in Dutch Quarter, Belverdere.
“Making Sint Maarten beautiful again starts with making sure that the most vulnerable among us know that there is a caring, effective government, that takes decisions with these citizens in mind. Any other way is a delusional way of governing for the people. Our intentions should be clear, of high standard and executable. We should never stop questioning why it’s so difficult to manage our sixteen square miles with less then 80 thousand people. Sitting at the sidelines and not becoming involved in the future of our children is a none starter going forward.”
Gracita states: “There are a list of issues to keep an eye on this new year including the subjects mentioned earlier in this release. To mention a few;
-an island wide clean up campaign in general and specifically a clear plan to get rid of the millions of car wrecks dotting our island-scape. Is it true that we are importing car-wrecks?
- a comprehensive Philipsburg reconstruction plan, which includes a new Parliament building in the location of the old administration building, a three-tier parking space at the location of the post office building. A park, yes, a green park at the location of the parking lot., introduction of parking meters.
-finalizing our decision on our currency, dollarization or Sint Maarten guilder, taking into account the future of the dollar.
-A strong economic policy that includes attracting real five star hotels, reopening mullet bay, pre-clearance at PJIA, continuation of training program for those who are still jobless or forced part-time workers. establishing a rental committee, and unemployment fund”. This policy will mean a safer, less stress full communities.
- submitting a plan to commemorate ten years of our new status in 2020, including holding a round table conference about the success, shortcomings of our present status and the way forward.”
Arrindell concludes: “My strong belief is, in order to measure our success in terms of our well being, happiness and economic progress, both the People and its Government must be in tune with each other. I’m asked often, what do I think of Sint Maarten’s future? My reply, Bright!”