Oranjestad, the Island Council last Thursday has adopted a motion where they approve the 2017 budget approved and declare to be preparing to execute the approved budget. In a letter to minister of Internal Affairs and Kingdom Relations, the island council motivates her decision.
“With reference to the motion of May 9, 2017 and the correspondence of both the Island Council and the Board of Governors to you regarding the contradiction of Dutch legislation with the UN Charter and the relevant resolutions attached thereto, we hereby inform that Article 19 of the Public Finance Act BES (Wet FinBES) is in violation of the UN Charter (and in particular with the dominant obligation of the Netherlands to respect the right of Saint Eustatius to a full degree of self-government), and therefore on the basis of Articles 73 and 103 of the UN Charter do not have or may have legal force.”, according to the letter of the Island Council, signed by acting Governor Julian Woodley and the substitute island registrar Mrs. Connel-Maduro.
It can be expected that the adopted motion and letter will further infuriate The Hague, which has placed Sint Eustatius under higher supervision because of the lack of confidence in the budget prepared by the Island Government and in the functioning of the island government all together.
The fact that the budget for 2017 is still not approved has Statia government caught between a rock and a hard place. Because of the prior supervision implemented, Government needs to get prior approval for every single expenditure from the Kingdom Representative’s office in Bonaire.