HARBOUR VIEW–“Your actions and decisions, individually and collectively, will be critical to the rebuilding and recovery of St. Maarten, or in the spirit of Easter, critical to the revival of St. Maarten … to help bring about the required revival, your tenure calls for a new focus and approach going forward,” Governor Eugene Holiday told newly sworn-in fifteen Members of Parliament on Easter Monday.
In his charge, the Governor told MPs their focus must be “the revival of our economy, the revival of employment for our people, the renewal of our waste management, the strengthening of our hurricane resilience and the revival of our public finances.”
As a result of the February 26 snap elections and taking the oath of office before him, MPs have, individually and collectively, been entrusted with the responsibility to represent the people of St. Maarten “during the next four year – that is not one, not two, not three but four years,” said the Governor.
“This means that you have been elected by the people of St. Maarten to provide the support needed to form a government, to keep a check on that government and to put laws in place, all in the interest of the people,” he emphasized.
In the context of the country’s post-Hurricane Irma reality, the new MPs take their seats in the legislature “in one of the most challenging periods in our nation’s history … You will face major choices and decisions that will affect the lives of our people.”
“In the Easter spirit you are, individually and collectively, called upon to rise above the narrow confines of individual interests to focus on and address the broader and higher revival ideals of our society. You are called upon to unite and provide the basis for stable and good governance. You are called upon to champion and defend a national rebuilding and recovery program that will meet and protect the social, economic and financial needs and interests of our people,” the Governor further implored MPs.
He pointed out: “It is, as such, clear that the trust placed in you, individually and collectively, comes with high expectations … Taking an oath or making a pledge as a representative of the people is therefore a serious legal, but also personal and public matter.”
The oath taken by MPs is based on Article 56 of the Constitution. The Governor called MPs’ attention to the four aspects as stipulated in the oath, the first is that their solemn expression of their commitment to perform their function independently and with integrity, that is that they have not accepted anything from or given anything to anyone in connection with their election as a Member of Parliament.
The second aspect in taking the oath is the MP’s pledge of allegiance to the King and the Kingdom Charter. Third is the MP’s sincere pledge or promise to always help to uphold the Constitution of St. Maarten and the last is unconditionally swear to always dedicate his/herself to foster the wellbeing of the people of St. Maarten.
“In taking this solemn oath of office this morning you agree to accept and commit to carry out the serious responsibilities entrusted to you by the people and for the people. And that you will do so with integrity anchored on our constitutional principles,” said the Governor.
“Thus as you take up your office, I trust that you will use the oath as a guide in the performance of your function to promote stable and effective governance towards the revival of our nation. With that trust, I hereby wish you strength and wisdom in the fulfillment of you responsibilities along with God’s blessings for and protection of you and our beloved St. Maarten,” said the Governor.
Bron: Daily Herald