Soualiga News Today

Soualiga News Today (3438)

Bird Strikes InselAir Flight. Forced to Land in Curacao

WILLEMSTAD, Curacao – An InselAir flight on the route from Aruba to Miami, on Thursday afternoon had to re-route to Curacao after a bird struck one of the aircrafts engines.  According to media reports, this event took place right after the aircraft took off from the Aruba Queen Beatrix International Airport.

Pilots on the aircraft felt the collision and immediately checked all instruments and decided as a precautionary measure to fly to Curacao.  Curacao Hato International Airport fire units were placed on alert as the aircraft prepared for landing.

After the InselAir flight landed on Curacao, technicians checked the aircraft and determined that indeed a bird struck one of the engines. 

No damage was found and the aircraft was allowed to depart for Miami on its scheduled flight.


Economic Control Department Destroys Expired Goods Found on SANG’s Supermarket Shelves

PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten – The Economic Inspection Department Controllers (TEZVT) that falls under the Ministry of Tourism, Economic Affairs, Transportation and Telecommunication (Ministry TEATT), during a control of SANG’s Supermarket, discovered several expired items on store shelves.

The items were destroyed and disposed of because they were harmful and unfit for human consumption.

The owner/manager was informed by the Controllers that the infringements on public health were becoming too frequent and this can have serious consequences for the business.

The owner promised that he would increase surveillance regarding shelf-packers and instruct them to pay more attention when packing the items in their corresponding aisles.

The items controlled and found to have expired were: Country Diary; Lu Panky; Keebler Crackers; Bimbo Coconut Cookies; Kellogg’s Crips; Kellogg’s Nutri Grain; Tiffany Glu Milk/Honey; Quaker Oatmeal Cookies; Nabisco Ginger Snaps; Keebler Honey Crackers; Grand Jury Chocolate; Zonnatura Tarwezemelen; Nestle Morochas; Gran Cereale Classic; and Gerber Baby Food.

Three items in particular had surpassed their expiration dates more than a year ago and in one case 15-months with the most recent item having expired on May 16, 2014.

Food safety is a number one priority for Minister of TEATT Hon. Ted Richardson.  Foodborne diseases take a major toll on health around the world.  Millions of people fall ill and many die as a result of eating unsafe food.

Businesses in the food business have to ensure that the products they sell are not expired and ensure that all food is safe for consumption.

TEZVT will actively control business for violations and there will be consequences for infractions of the law.     

Controls are an important aspect of government and it ensures that the playing field is levelled for all operating in the market.  In addition, it ensures that businesses and the environment can live and co-exist peacefully and prosperously.

EID activities are governed by the license country regulation (1963 no.28) and the island regulation of 15 April 1976 in implementation of Article 8.

Additional controls will be forthcoming from other control and inspection divisions within Government.  



Democratic Party to Open Campaign Headquarters on Pondfill and Launch Campaign

PONDFILL, Sint Maarten - The Democratic Party of St. Maarten (DP) will be officially opening its campaign headquarters above the Soualiga Service Point in the former Movies one and two building on the Pondfill on Friday. The opening will also be the launch of the DP’s ‘You Can’t Buy My Vote’ Campaign.

The opening of the headquarters will feature a sticker and wristband drive and will feature entertainment provided by DJ Rude.

Prior to the opening of the new headquarters, DP president Hasani Ellis stated; “Historically the Democratic Party has provided transparent and accountable governance on St. Maarten for the better part of the last 60 years. Our party’s’ center left and center right policies have stimulated economic growth while protecting the sovereignty of the people.

“I am therefore confident in our Economic Hub development strategy that bridges the social and economic interests of Europe and the Caribbean for the better half of the last century,” DP President Hasani Ellis said on Thursday.

Leader of the DP Prime Minister Wescot-Williams stated that she looked forward to the opening and is encouraging all to attend the special event commenting that the focus of the newly revamped DP will be on an inclusive and honest approach in Government.

“Let me put it as clearly and as concisely as possible: the Democratic Party will not be ‘breaking its neck’ just to put forward a full a list of candidates, something which other parties are doing with individuals, some of whom, sad to say, place their own interest above that of the people.

“The focus of the Democratic Party going forward will be on persons who want to contribute to the process of seeking to be elected by the people for all of the right reasons. Stability, honesty, openness, integrity, knowledge and realistic hopefulness will be key themes going forward.

“The Democratic Party is focused and resolute about moving away from the usual political rhetoric of campaign promises that cannot be fulfilled. Where we stand today as a political party and as a country is extremely important, and indeed 2014 is a pivotal year for both party and country,” stated the Party Leader.

The public is encouraged to attend the event that kicks off at five pm. on Friday the 4th of July.


Hurricane Arthur Forecast to become Category 2 Before Making Landfall

MIAMI-SINT MAARTEN – UPDATE - The first hurricane of the season Arthur at 11.00am was located 260 miles SW of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina or 110 miles SSW of Cape Fear, North Carolina.

The National Hurricane Center is forecasting that Hurricane Arthur could become a category 2 hurricane before making landfall Thursday night.  

Hurricane Arthur wind speeds have increased from 80 mph to 90 mph with higher gusts.  The system is moving NNE at a slow 10 mph.

Hurricane watches are in effect for coastal areas of North Carolina and Virginia.

The National Hurricane Center says interests along the US East Coast especially South eastern New England should monitor the progress of Arthur.

Hurricane Arthur is forecasts to weaken Friday night and become a post-tropical system on Saturday.


Sint Maarten Travellers to the U.S. could Experience Enhanced Airport Security Measures due to New Aviation Threat

SOUALIGA NEWSDAY REPORTING – Security and Airport officials around the world will be informed within the next few days by United States Homeland Department officials about which countries and airports will need to increase security measures and vigilance – enhanced security measures - due to a new security threat for international aviation, but more in particular aircraft heading to the U.S.

Sint Maarten travellers heading out for the school holiday season may also experience some additional security measures especially if traveling to the United States.

The security threat according to media reports comes from al-Qaeda affiliates in Syria and Yemen who are in the process of developing bombs to smuggle onto planes.



MIAMI, FL-SINT MAARTEN - Emil Lee, general manager of Princess Heights Hotel, St. Maarten, takes over the reigns as president of the Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association (CHTA) for the next two years, a volunteer position for which he was elected, and he will oversee one of the most successful regional hotel associations from his home base in St. Maarten.  Lee is the first person from St. Maarten to be elected to the association’s highest post.

Lee, who is also running to become a Member of Parliament in St. Maarten in the upcoming elections, had offered to resign his new CHTA post before it started, but was asked by the CHTA Executive Board to delay his resignation pending the outcome of the August elections.

CHTA elected a new slate of officers at its Annual General Meeting (AGM), held July 1, 2014 at the Hyatt Regency Miami.  The officers will be led by Lee who was sworn in as president of CHTA during the AGM.  Lee and the officers will serve the membership of CHTA for the 2014-16 bienniums.

The Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association (CHTA) facilitates the full potential of the Caribbean hotel and tourism industry by serving members’ needs and building partnerships in a socially responsible and sustainable manner.  CHTA is the voice of the Caribbean hospitality industry for the development of the region in the highly competitive and sophisticated environment of international tourism. Today, tourism is widely recognized as a pivotal industry in the economy of the region – and CHTA functions as the common denominator for this industry in a region of diverse nationalities, languages and styles, identifying mutual problems and marshalling the resources of the active and allied members to devise solutions. CHTA represents all facets of the hospitality industry with more than 600 member hotels and over 300 allied members.

CHTA, including the events staged by the association, is supported by Strategic Partners MasterCard, Interval International, OBM International, HVS, Tambourine and TravelZoo.

For more information, visit  Follow CHTA on Facebook and Twitter


13 Kilos of Cocaine Seized at Airport, 21-Year Old in Custody

AIRPORT, Sint Maarten - On Tuesday, July 1st 2014, Customs Officers at Princess Juliana International Airport found almost 13 kilo of cocaine packed in one suitcase after a routine control in the luggage compartment.

According to the claim tag the suitcase belonged to a female passenger R.D.L.M. 21 years of age, who was on her way to the Dominican Republic. 

The passenger was taken off the flight and taken into custody and handed over to the police department for further investigation.

Due to the ongoing investigation, further information cannot be released at this moment.  (Contributed by the Customs Sint Maarten)


Police and stakeholders to implement new plan of approach for current crime spree

PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten - The Sint Maarten Police Force along with other partners in the Justice Chain and partners in the community will be executing numerous plans of approach that have been drafted, to combat the  amount of armed robberies, break-ins and other criminal activity on the island.

During the execution of these plans the police along with their partners such as the Immigration and naturalization Department and Customs will definitely be more visible.

The entire community is therefore advised to cooperate to the fullest during the execution of plans. They should at all times carry proper identification with them.

Drivers of motor vehicles should also make sure that all documents for their vehicle are in order to avoid inconvenience if they are stopped by the police.


The Caribserve Video X Games 2014 Registration Gets on the way with Local Champ

COLE BAY, Sint Maarten - Local Street Fighter and Injustice Champion, Emran Charles officially opened The Caribserve Video X Games 2014 tournament registration this week.

Emran was the first to register for the annual E-Sport tournament scheduled for this July 18th through 20th at the Port de Plaisance hotel facility.

As in previous years, the weekend-long event will be hosted by the VXG foundation and title partner Caribserve, and is expected to attract hundreds of e-sports champions to the island from across the world to compete in the hottest e-sports games.

On site to present Charles with his registration card was Ivy Lambert, the Marketing Representative of Caribserve. “We are happy to see that the event we have put our support behind three years ago is still growing in popularity and becoming a yearly staple event” Lambert comments.

Gamers can register for the tournament at the UTS store in Philipsburg from Monday to Friday from 1:00Pm – 4:00Pm and at Soggy Dollar Bar on Sundays from 5:00Pm – 7:00Pm.

For more scheduling and tournament information; visit or


BREAKING NEWS: Gun Found is the Murder Weapon that Killed MP Wiels

WILLEMSTAD, Curacao – The Dutch Forensics Institute has confirmed according to media reports that the firearm found on June 14 in the Curacao Waaigat, is the murder weapon that killed Curacao Member of Parliament Helmin Wiels.

It is expected that the Curacao authorities will make a formal announcement with respect to this part of the investigation and what impact it may or will have on the case.

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