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Win your 2018 credit back- winner selected

SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) - UTS is happy to announce the winner for the year-end raffle where customers could win their entire 2018 purchases of prepaid credit back, the telecom provider said in a press statement on Monday. 

“Congratulations go out to Ms. Nateisha Givans for being our winner! Ms. Givans was one of thousands of entries in the raffle over the December 2018/January 2019 period. 

“Ms. Givans was called LIVE on-air during the Suppa Duppa morning Show on Laser 101 to confirm her winnings. UTS customers can still look forward to the results of another raffle, the selection of which will take place later this week. 

“In this second raffle, the winner will win a trip to Curacao during carnival 2019! UTS encourages customers to stay tuned for that announcement and many more activities for 2019.”  

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SOS Radio Celebrates 10 years this Friday

MARIGOT/GREAT BAY — SOS Radio 95.9 FM is celebrating their tenth anniversary this coming Friday, January 18, 2019, according to Jacques “Billy D” Hamlet, managing director of SOS Radio.  

“This first decade has been a very exciting and interesting one for the radio station, and we have a lot to be thankful for,” said Hamlet.

It was on January 9, 2009, when the radio officially transmitted on the airwaves for the first time. “To mark the tenth anniversary, we are inviting the general public, our sponsors, business partners and well-wishers, to join us for an early morning breakfast, on Friday, January 18, 2019, from 7am, at SOS Radio studio in Marigot,” said Hamlet, who has been the driving force behind the success of SOS Radio. 

During the past 10 years, SOS Radio has been awarded the number one radio station on St. Martin in two separate surveys. “With over 18000 family card members, we credit our success to the people who have supported us from day one,” emphasized Hamlet.

“We take our role as media very seriously by providing vital information to the general public. We also try our best at all times to accommodate programs that inform and educate the St. Martin community,” said Hamlet. 

 “With the advent of technology, the internet and the launching of our new App, SOS Radio SXM, our fan base has grown world wide. We have listeners in Africa, Europe, United States of America, Canada, South America and throughout the Caribbean,” said Hamlet.

“We want to take this opportunity to say a big thank you to each and every one for making us your favorite radio station,” concluded Billy D.    

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FOUNDATIONS URGED TO REGISTER SXM DOET PROJECTS

SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) - The annual community service event, SXM DOET, presented by Be The Change Foundation, will take place on March 15 & 16, 2019. While many organizations have already registered, Project Managers Melanie Choisy, Fleur Hermanides and Laura Bijnsdorp are urging all foundations and community-involved groups to consider registering a project for which volunteers are needed before the funding deadline of January 31, 2019. 

Organizations such as schools, daycares, foundations, neighborhood associations, sports teams, youth groups, or volunteer corps may request up to USD $650.00 per project as long as they take place in different locations. At least 5 volunteers must be recruited from outside their organizations to qualify for funding. 

Last year, volunteers had the opportunity to choose from 107 projects scattered throughout the island. Roughly 1,800 volunteers made an impact by volunteering for the two-day event following the destruction caused by the previous year’s hurricane season. 

Project managers Melanie, Fleur and Laura express that they do not necessarily want to see an increase in the number of projects in 2019, but rather an enhancement in the creativity of projects to ensure a positive experience for both organizations and volunteers.

Organizations have until January 31 to register their projects on the www.sxmdoet.com website and apply for funding from the Oranje Fonds for SXM DOET 2019.  There is also the opportunity to come in person and register your project at the Samenwerkende Fonds office in Madame Estate on January 29 from 2-6pm.

For more information or assistance registering, please call 586-0808 or e-mail This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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12 singers in finals to challenge The Protégé for Calypso crown. Winner gets a cruise and regular $10,000

SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) - The St. Maarten Carnival Development Foundation (SCDF) will skip hosting a Senior Calypso Elimination for Carnival 50 and go straight to the Senior Calypso Finals finals with 12 singers who will challenge reigning Calypso King Ruminni “The Protégé” Rogers for his title. The Calypso Competition is once again branded as the Nagico Senior Calypso Finals.

The SCDF invited all Calypsonians to a recently held meeting to go over all details of the 2019 Calypso Competition and to gauge the participation level. The meeting was held on Thursday, January 10. Following the meeting, which was also attended by the reigning Calypso King, it was determined that an elimination round was not necessary. The SCDF will allow the 12 singers to move directly to the finals where they will still perform two songs each, giving Calypso a full night of social commentary.

“There are some very interesting newcomers to the Calypso arena who will be performing in the finals,” President of the SCDF Alston Lourens said. These newcomers include the current Soca Groovy Monarch Kenyo Baly, Ambassa Da Lion, Clara “Lady Rey” Reyes and Elton “Mighty LT” Richardson. Also competing will be the King’s brother King Rumer and his uncle known as The Pensioner. Zhaira “Z” Richardson, The Mighty Magic, Man George, Lady Upsetter, Mighty Pepper and Chip Man will round out the challengers to The Protégé. 

“We have a full night of social commentary slated for April 22 in Carnival Village. We are eager to hear what the newcomers will bring to the stage and I’m sure the King himself is curious about all these new challengers to his crown,” Lourens said. “It’s also good to see younger singers step up to try the art form of Calypso especially for the 50thanniversary of Carnival. We also have an initiative to announce soon that regards the revival of Junior Calypso Competition,” Lourens added.

For Carnival’s 50thanniversary the SCDF will also be added some other prizes to the regular cash prizes the eventual winner, second and third runner up wins. The foundation announced that the King or Queen will receive a cruise along with the US $10,000 cash prize. The second and third runner ups win US $5,000 and US $3,500 respectively. Their other prizes will be announced at a later date. 

Commenting on the choice of other Calypsonians not to participate this year, Lourens said it is “very, very unfortunate” especially for the Golden Anniversary of Carnival when veteran singers are depicted on the official Carnival schedule, in the soon-to-be-released children’s coloring book and so on. 

He explained that the Easter holidays in 2019, like many other Carnival years, have forced the SCDF to work with a much shorter schedule. “It’s strictly about the calendar. Almost all stakeholders had to make sacrifices for 2019 because of how Easter fell. We experience this every few years, it’s nothing new to Carnival stakeholders,” Lourens said. 

He added that it is not factual that the Calypso show is always held before Jouvert. In fact, he explained, whenever the show is scheduled the night before Jouvert, it records the smallest crowd out of any Carnival show. 

“Last year, we tried it again and it was the least attended Calypso show in five years. “There isn’t a single show in Carnival that has a set date to where it will be held. In the past six years, the Calypso show has been staged before Jouvert just twice. The only events on the Carnival schedule that has set dates are Jouvert and the two Grand Parades. Everything else changes every year. That change is even more extreme when Easter falls late. So as a foundation, we really think it’s unfortunate,” Lourens said. 

Lourens also made it clear that to date, the foundation has never received an official correspondence or such from any of the Calypsonians that have chosen not to participate. “Everything we know and have heard is through the media. That too is unfortunate,” he said. 

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59-Year Old Garbage collector crushed by vehicle on Sunday morning

SINT MAARTEN (COLE BAY) - The Police Traffic Department is presently investigating an accident involving a garbage collector who was ran over by the garbage truck he worked on, police said on Sunday. 

The incident took place on Sunday January 13that approximately 4.30 a.m. on the Wellington road in the vicinity of Peterson’s Plaza.

Police patrols who were first on the scene encountered the male victim identified with initials T.M. (59) a Haitian national lying on the street and was not showing any signs of life. 

The officers started to give the victim CPR until the arrival of the paramedics who took over the treatment. The victim however could not be revived and had died of the injuries he sustained.

According to a witness the victim lost his balance when he jumped off the back of the truck at the same time the driver was reversing the vehicle and he was accidentally ran over. Dr. Mercuur came to the scene and pronounced the death of the victim. The investigation into this case thus far does not indicate any foul play. (Sint Maarten Police Force)

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SZV RESPONDS ON INDEXATION SOCIAL PENSIONS

SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) - Social & Health Insurances SZV responds to inquiries made on the 2019 AOV/AWW amounts by clarifying that it plays no role in the indexation process. There is no situation of decision making by SZV to not index the amounts, as this is not the role of SZV. 

SZV was contacted by the St. Maarten Anti-Poverty Platform and St. Maarten Consumers Coalition regarding the indexation of the 2019 amounts on January 8th, to which a response and clarification was provided to the platforms on January 10th. Statements by the platforms published on January 11thregarding the role of SZV are incorrect. 

“SZV would like to re-iterate that there is an ‘open-door’ policy where inquiries and concerns are welcomed to be discussed. It is unfortunate that there was a misunderstanding of the role of SZV in this matter.” 

In this case, the role of the SZV is to execute the AOV/AWW law, to inform the public of the annual amounts and to implement these in the payment procedures to the recipients. The law mandates that the CPI of August be used in calculating and indexing the AOV/AWW amounts. 

According to the notification SZV received from the Ministry of VSA in November 2018, no adjustments would be made to the 2019 amounts due to the fact that the Department of Statistics (STAT) will not be publishing the consumer indexes (CPI) in 2018. This clarification is included in the publication of the 2019 amounts. 

The St. Maarten Anti-Poverty Platform and St. Maarten Consumers Coalition were referred to the Ministry of VSA for additional support. The Minister of VSA, Emil Lee indicated to SZV that the concern of the platform has the attention of the Ministry and will be directly addressed.

In consultation with the platform representative on January 11th, SZV was informed that unfortunately, SZV’s response did not make it on time for consideration in the platforms’ press release to the media.

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Three car accident on Saturday leaves one dead

SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) - The Police Traffic Department is presently investigating a traffic accident with one fatality. This accident happened on Saturday January 12that approximately 1.35 a.m. on the A.J.C. Brouwers road in the vicinity of the Osbourne Kruythoff round a-bout, police said in a report on Saturday. 

On the scene of the accident the investigating officers realized that three private vehicles with license plates P-3237, 9311-AAB and P-8883 were involved.

As a result of the impact the driver of the 9311-ABB died of the injuries he sustained.  The female passenger did show signs of life and was immediately transported by ambulance to the Sint Maarten Medical Center after being freed from the mangled vehicle by personnel from the Fire Department.

The death of the driver was pronounced by Doctor Mercuur who came to the scene. Neither of the victims were wearing a seatbelt at the time of the impact. 

The drivers of the P-3237 and the P-8883 did not suffer any injuries, however the driver of the P-3237 seem to have been under the influence of alcohol. 

The suspect identified with initials K.N. (18) was arrested on the spot and taken to Police Headquarters where he remains in custody for further investigation.

The investigation is still ongoing to determine exactly the cause of the accident. (Sint Maarten Police Force)

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CPS: Prevent infections by frequent Handwashing

GREAT BAY, (DCOMM) – Handwashing with soap is an effective and affordable way to prevent infections and diseases and save lives.

To reach the aforementioned goal, handwashing must be practiced at key times, such as before preparing food or eating, after using the toilet or sneezing.  Behavior change is essential for making handwashing a habit.

The Collective Prevention Services (CPS), a department from the Sint Maarten Ministry of Public Health, Social Development and Labour, calls on residents to implement handwashing with soap as one of the most important public health interventions.

It is very important to wash hands with soap before cooking or preparing food, before eating, and before feeding someone (including breastfeeding). 

Contamination of food can lead to a wide range of illnesses and outbreaks, many of which are particularly dangerous for young children and people with compromised immune systems.

Many infections start when hands are contaminated with disease-causing bacteria and viruses. This can happen after using the toilet, changing a child’s diaper, coughing, sneezing, touching other people’s hands, and touching other contaminated surfaces. 

Handwashing with soap works by removing bacteria and viruses from hands before they get a chance to cause infections or spread to other people. 

For more information, you can call CPS 542-1322, 1122, 1222 or 542-1570.

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Brian Mingo is new CEO of SXM Airport

SINT MAARTEN (SIMPSON BAY-AIRPORT) - Following an extensive national and international search that included candidates from Curacao, USA and Europe, the Supervisory Board of Directors of the Princess Juliana International Airport Operating company, PJIAE N.V. is pleased to announce the appointment of Mr. Brian F. Mingo as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) effective January 7th, 2019. 

As the new Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Mr. Brian Mingo brings to the Princess Juliana International Airport over 20 years of local and international executive experience and a combination of senior management, business development, operations, customer service and project-, change management expertise. 

Mr. Brian Mingo grew up in Sint Maarten, and has strong academic credentials including a Masters in Logistics from the UK.
Prior to his position at TelEm Group of Companies, Mr. Mingo held the position of General Manager at TelCell where he developed and implemented the mobile network infrastructure and its business as a start-up. 

As Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Mr. Brian Mingo will assume overall leadership in the strategic planning, operations and financial performance of Princess Juliana International Airport, together with PJIAE’s Management board Ravi Daryanani (CFO) and Michel Hyman (COO) 

“During this time of reconstruction and transformation, Mr. Brian Mingo is the right candidate,” said Alex Dijkhoffz, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Directors. The entire Supervisory Board of Directors is impressed with the value that Mr. Mingo will bring to the Princess Juliana International Airport. 

“Brian has vast experience in building and growing large organizations. He is a proven leader with a clear business vision, project management skills and the ability to bring people together. His vision on how the airport needs to be transformed and experience around the world is exactly what PJIA needs as the company enters a critical period for the regrowth of Sint Maarten,” Dijkhoffz said. 

“It is not an easy task to undertake at this time, especially seeing what PJIAE went through, what has been done and what is still to be done to bring the airport back to its leadership position in Caribbean aviation. However, we are confident that with the team now completed with the appointment of a new CEO, we can meet the set objectives and strategic targets,” concluded Dijkhoffz. 

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Little Bay Pond Litter Clean-up and Birdwatching

SINT MAARTEN (LITTLE BAY) - Start your year off right by getting some good karma points and join Environmental Protection in the Caribbean (EPIC) for a litter clean-up. 

On Sunday January 20th, from 8 a.m.-10 a.m. by the bird watching hut in Little Bay pond, EPIC is hosting its first litter clean-up of the year including a bird watch with local guide Binkie van Es. 

Little Bay pond is internationally recognized as an Important Bird Area and a rare freshwater wetland, providing sanctuary to many aquatic and bird species. So, get there on time to learn about all of the different species of birds that call the pond home and then join the clean-up! 

Garbage bags, gloves and cold beverages will be provided.  Participants can park in the Learning Unlimited Preparatory school parking lot and follow the signs for the short walk to the bird watching hut to sign in. 

Please don’t forget to wear sun protection, closed toe shoes and bring water (preferably in a reusable bottle). For more information, contact +1 (721) 581-4932 or send a message to facebook.com/epicislands

Divi Bird Walk Little Bay 2015 9

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