Oranjestad- Councilman Clyde van Putten issued a written apology for using the F-word during an island council meeting on Monday.
The profane language was used when Government Commissioner Alida Francis was explaining to the Councilman what had been agreed upon during a meeting of the Presidium, of which Van Putten forms no part. When Van Putten sat down at the table, the profanity was heard. It was not immediatly clear if his expression was intended for fellow Councilman Koos Sneek, or for Commisioner Franciss. Francis in either case immediatly remarked that she would not allow for such words to be used on the floor of the Island Council.
Van Putten in the early evening sent out a written press statement and also taped a video which was distributed on Facebook.
“During a public meeting of the Island Legislative council on monday september 20th 2021, an incident occurred involving myself, Clyde I van Putten and member of the opposition Nicolaas Koos Sneek. This came in the wake of my contribution regarding the decision taken by the government to award the contract to Blues & Blues who will provide ferry services between the islands of Sint eustatius, Saba, Sint Maarten and St. Kitts. The member of the opposition chose to personally provoke me at the moment of my contribution, something that has been a routine on his path. As a result I got angry and uttered profane language. which was unfortunate and a poor lack of judgement on my path. I immediately apologized to the sitting of the council, the Island community of Sint eustatius and the wider community at large who was tuned into the live debate of the Island legislative council. Through this medium I wish to again sincerely apologize to all concerned for my behavior exhibited as a result of this incident. As a community the people hold their representatives to high standards. My actions during this sitting fell short of the expectations of our people. For this I again apologize to the citizens and residents. I wish to assure you that such an incident on my path will never recur in the future”, according to Van Putten.
Koos Sneek in an invited comment said that he felt the reaction by Van Putten was uncalled for. “As an island council member, I think you should be able to control yourself”, said Sneek, who added that he however was more taken aback by the fact that the PLP-fraction had decided to vote against the Rental and Rent Subsidy ordinance.
While for some time Sneek and Van Putten seemed to get along better than before, as of late some tension seems to exist again between the two senior council members.
Many on the island reacted in a negative way to the profanity uttered by Van Putten.
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