De rechtbank van Sint-Maarten heeft vrijdag de Fundashon Pro Soualiga niet-ontvankelijk verklaard in een kort geding tegen de Nederlandse Staat. De organisatie is tegen de plannen van Nederland om in ruil voor coronasteun een Caribische Hervormingsentiteit met verregaande bevoegdheden in te richten.
Pro Soualiga wilde het Statuut, dat de wettelijke basis vormt voor de onderlinge verhoudingen in het Koninkrijk, ongeldig laten verklaren. Dat zou niet in overeenstemming zijn met het recht op zelfbeschikking, zoals bepaald door de Verenigde Naties.
De stichting is niet ontvankelijk in haar eis omdat zij vergeten is haar statuten in te brengen. Bovendien is niet gebleken zij op het dekolonisatie thema ooit activiteiten heeft ontplooid, waardoor zij belanghebbende is.
Ook heeft de stichting niet voldoende geprobeerd om langs andere weg in overeenstemming te komen met de Nederlandse Staat.
Verder stelt de rechter dat er geen spoedeisend belang is in deze zaak, omdat niet gebleken is dat Sint-Maarten akkoord gaat met een concensus-Rijkswet die de coronasteun op lange termijn gaat regelen. Het formele wetgevingstraject is nog niet begonnen.
In zijn oordeel stelt het gerecht dat als er toch een beoordeling had gevolgd, de stichting in het ongelijk zou worden gesteld.
In de kern wil de stichting de Nederlandse Staat verbieden het conceptvoorstel van een nieuwe Rijkswet tot stand te brengen. Maar dat is geen zaak voor de rechter.
Rijkswetten worden vastgesteld door de regering van het Koninkrijk en de Staten-Generaal gezamenlijk en is afhankelijk van politieke besluitvorming en afweging van de daarbij betrokken belangen. De rechter mag niet ingrijpen in deze procedure van politieke besluitvorming.
Bovendien gaat het hier om een consensus Rijkswet, waarbij alle deelnemende landen met het wetsvoorstel moeten instemmen. Dat betekent dus dat ook de regeringen van de landen, democratisch gecontroleerd door de Staten van die landen, op grond van politieke besluitvorming en afweging van de betrokken belangen de vraag moeten beantwoorden of die tot stand moet worden gebracht en zo ja, welke inhoud ze moet hebben. Ook daarin mag de rechter niet ingrijpen, aldus het Gerecht.
Voor het volledige vonnis, klik hier
COURT OF FIRST INSTANCE OF SINT MAARTEN
Case number: SXM202000806
Judgment of 9 October 2020 in interlocutory proceedings
THE PRO SOUALIGA FOUNDATION,
established in Sint Maarten,
the applicant, hereinafter ‘the Foundation’, v
- The state of the Netherlands (Ministry of the Interior and Kingdom Relations),
sitting in the Hague, The Netherlands, defendant, hiema: the state,
agents: Mr J. W. H. van Wijk and Mr C. R. Rutte,
HET LAND ST. MAARTEN (Ministry of General Affairs ),
sitting at Sint Maarten, defendant, ‘ the land, agent: Mr R. F. Gibson, jr.
Conduct of proceedings
1.1. The Foundation submitted a petition on 31 August 2020. Then, on the 25th of september, 2020, the hearings took place, in which there appeared on behalf of the Foundation, its board members, messrs, P. O. Brison, and R. L., Brison, and on behalf of the State, and the above-mentioned agents. Under Article 28b of the rules of Procedure of the common Court, Mr Van Wijk was authorised as Agent in these proceedings. Prior to the hearing, the foundation withdrew its claim against the country.
The parties also spoke on the basis of a plea agreement. A report shall be drawn up on the examination and shall be attached to the documents.
1.2. Sentence has been handed down today.
- The facts
2.1. The COVID-19 pandemic has far-reaching consequences worldwide. Many countries are in a deep crisis. The autonomous countries of Aruba, Cura<;ao and Sint Maarten. These countries have requested assistance from the Netherlands. By letter of 10 July 20201 to the Second Chamber, Secretary of State Knops informed the Cabinet that he was prepared to
l it 2019/20, 35 420, no 96.
financial support and humanitarian aid. It notes that the Netherlands has now allocated EUR 41.2 million in humanitarian aid for this purpose. That’s a gift with no strings attached. The Netherlands also granted conditional liquidity aid through a system of tranches.
2.2. In the letter of 10 July 2020, Secretary of State, Mr Knops, further states: ‘in the longer term, it is important to ensure that the economies of the countries of Central and eastern
to be resilient and to offer more security of life to the inhabitants. There is no
more scope for further postponement of reforms that have been desperately needed for a long time but have never been implemented for a variety of reasons. Therefore, conditions were set for budget support from the Netherlands to ensure that public authorities achieve results in terms of financial management and good governance. The Netherlands is also prepared to support the countries in implementing the necessary reforms and making investments. The Netherlands in the coming years, with a lot of tax-payer guarantees, we want to make sure that we have the countries with the resources to be allocated more and to firm up. For the sake of all the inhabitants.
At the State Ministerial Council of 10 July 2020, an integral proposal for further liquidity support, reforms and investment was put forward for decision-making, including a set of conditions attached to it. (… ) Cura<; ao and Sint Maarten did not accept this proposal.”
2.3. As part of that comprehensive proposal, the request is testemmen the contents of a draft bill of the Law of the Caribbean hervormingsentiteit of Aruba, Curac;ao, and Sint T rt 2 (hereinafter referred to as the conceptvoorstel Act), and the ad is dirty, submit it as a bill passed by the Council of State of the Kingdom. This draft National Law is the subject of the present dispute.
2.4. By letter of 23 July 2020, Mr R. L. Brison, on behalf of the foundation I.o., ordered the state to end decolonisation. The state has a period of
7 August 2020 As the state had not yet responded on 7 August 2020, the foundation initiated a substantive proceedings against the State on 14 August 2020.
2.5. The foundation was then established on 24 July 2020.
2.6. By letter of 17 August 2020, Mr R. L. Brison, on behalf of the foundation, ordered the state to discontinue the draft state law. If it is not indicated within seven days whether the summation will be met, the foundation will take legal action, aid us the letter. By notice of 21 August 2020, the State indicated that it needed more time than the seven-day deadline. The present application was submitted by the foundation on 31 August 2020.
2 annex to the letter of 10 July 2020 to the Second Chamber .
3.1. The Foundation of the State, and to prohibit the use of the proposed Law, and Hervormingsentiteit, and also to forbid to use the charter for the Kingdom of the Netherlands (hereinafter referred to as the Regulations), or in any other manner in respect of Sint Maarten, the Regulations in place. This is on penalty of a penalty payment.
3.2. The foundation bases its claim-briefly reproduced – on the following.
The statute and the Kingdom of the Netherlands were not adopted because the United Nations General Assembly refused to include in resolution 945X of 15 december 1955 the following declarations::
1. The people of The Netherlands Antilles have exercised their right to self-determination;
2. The people of The Netherlands Antilles have achieved a full measure of self government;
3. Chapter XI can no longer be applied to the Netherlands Antilles.
The proposed state law and Reform entity originate in the statute and share the same fate as the statute, according to the foundation.
Furthermore, the proposed state law and Reform entity is contrary to Article 73 of the UN Charter. That article states the sacred duty of the state to ensure economic and social progress and protection against the abuse of these peoples, in this case Saint Maarten. The imposition of loans on St. Maarten is contrary to this and therefore illegal.
Moreover, the current crisis in Sint Maarten is caused by the coronavirus and the proposed state law and Reform entity do not cure COVID-19, according to the foundation.
3.3. The state’s defence was based on the grounds that it was inadmissible and dismissed the foundation’s costs by law.
3.4. The submissions of the parties shall be examined in more detail below, where relevant.
4.1. The Court of First Instance understands that by the proposed state law and Reform entity the Foundation refers to it under 2.3. the draft proposal referred to is Rijkswet.
4.2. As a preliminary defence, the state argued that the foundation was declared inadmissible client in its claims on the ground that there was no interest of its own within the meaning of Article 3:303 of the Civil Code (BW) and that the requirements of Article 3:305a BW for the establishment of a collective action were not met. The Court of First Instance held as follows:
4.3. The admissibility of a claimant party generally requires that the claimant has a direct interest in the action brought (CF. Article 303 BW). Article 3: 305a BW supplements this.
Article 3 (1) and (2): 305a BW are replaced by the following::
1. A foundation or association may bring an action for the protection of the same interests of other persons in so far as it defends these interests under its statute.
2. The legal person shall be inadmissible if, in the circumstances, he has not made sufficient efforts to achieve the requested by consulting the person summoned to attend.
4.4. The requirement mentioned above in the first paragraph of Article 3:305a BW is twofold.
4.4.1 first of all, the protection of these interests must be in line with the foundation’s statutory objective. It is therefore clear from the statutes client what interests the foundation has attracted and only for those interests it can take legal action.1
The foundation has not challenged its statutes. In the absence of the statutes in the present case, the statutory objective of the foundation cannot be established. Nor can it be assessed whether the interests for which the Foundation is currently acting in legal proceedings are in conformity with those interests.
4.4.2. Secondly, the wording of the requirement in Paragraph 1 implies that the foundation must have actually carried out activities in order to safeguard the interests covered by its statutory purpose. The mere mention of an interest in the statutes – in so far as this is already the case in this case, since the statutes are not present in this case – is not sufficient. From activities before or after the creation client shows that the flag covers the load.4 in the present case, activities carried out other than the initiation of the present proceedings have not been found to have taken place.
4.5. In addition, it has not proved sufficiently that the foundation has first tried to achieve the advanced by conducting consultations with the state, as required by the second paragraph of Article 3:305a of the BW. The letter of 17 August 2020 from the foundation to the state contains no reasonable attempt to do so . This letter is a summation to stop the draft Reichstag proposal and to respond to the foundation’s proposals within seven days. That deadline is unreasonably short. On the notification by the state of the need for more time than the given seven days, the Foundation acted in bringing the application for interim measures. The abovementioned letter of 23 July 2020 from the foundation to the state is not relevant in this context. This letter does not deal with the current prohibition on the draft proposal from the state.
3 Second Chamber, 1991-1992, 22 486, No 3 pag. 20.
4 See previous footnote, but pag. 21.
4.6. The fact that the foundation has an interest of its own within the meaning of Article 3:303 of the civil code in order to justify the action has not been established.
4.7. The foundation’s claim that, in spite of the foregoing, it could still receive its claims on grand from the Written Statement of the Kingdom of the Netherlands of 27 February 2018 in the Chagos Zakes cannot be followed.
4.8. In the light of the foregoing, the foundation will be declared inadmissible in its claims.
4.9. Even if the foundation Act was admissible in its claims under Article 3:305a of the BW, the claim would be declared inadmissible on the ground that there was no urgency. The court of first instance has jurisdiction under Article 226 (1) of the Code of Civil Procedure in all urgent cases where, in the interests of the parties, an immediate supply of supplies is required.
4.10. With regard to urgency, the Foundation states that the state and the country are about to introduce the draft state law. But there’s no evidence of that. Indeed, the above-mentioned letter of 10 July 2020 from Secretary of State Knops shows that the country has not agreed to the content of the draft Reich Act or to the decision to submit the draft Reich Act for advice to the Council of State of the Kingdom. This draft National Law is a consensus law, which requires the consent of the countries to which the national law applies. Now that this consent has not been given, the formal legislative process has not even begun, let alone is about to introduce this consensus law. This means that the claims on the draft National Law are not urgent.
4.11. The same applies to the remaining part of the claim that the state should be prohibited ‘from using the statute in any other way against Sint Maarten’, which is! so it does not appear to be on the draft Reichstag law. That claim was raised neither as a matter of urgency nor as a matter of urgency. In fact, it is so indeterminate that it is not at all clear what legal interest, let alone urgent interest, the foundation has in this.
4.12. In that state of affairs, the Court of first instance did not have to examine in detail the various legal bases of the claims and the defence put forward by the state against them .
4.13. For the sake of order, it should be noted that, in the event of the court of first instance, we are taking the case for interim measures! could have kept to himself, the advanced would not have been assigned. To that end, the Court of First Instance stated, for the sake of completeness, that:
5 product ie 5 at the time of application by the applicant .
4.14. In essence, the claim was that the Foundation asked the Court of First Instance to prohibit the state from implementing the draft state law. This, however, goes beyond the judicial role of the judicial authority.
4.15. The State points out that the kingdom laws will be adopted by the government of the Kingdom, and the States-General, jointly with the question of whether, when, and in what form force will be established, to be determined on the basis of the political decision-making, and the balancing of the interests at stake. The judge must not interfere in this political decision-making process. In addition, as the state also argues, consensus laws also require the consent of all participating countries. This means, therefore, that oak must answer the question of whether a consensus law should be drawn up and, if so, what content it should have, on the basis of political decision-making and balancing the interests involved. Oak can’t interfere with that.
4.16. The foundation will be ordered to pay the costs as the unsuccessful party. These costs, consisting of authorized representative salaries, have so far been budgeted on NAf at the side of the state. 2.000,00.
5.1. the Stichting Pro Soualiga is dismissed as inadmissible in its claims;
5.2. orders the Pro Soualiga Foundation to pay the costs of the proceedings, which has so far been budgeted on behalf of the State at NAf. 2.000,00;
5.3. the judgment was declared enforceable as regards the order for costs .
This judgment was delivered by Mr P. P. M. van der Burgt, judge, and delivered in open court on 9 October 2020 in the presence of the Registrar.