ORANJESTAD- As part of the process to gradually restore full democracy on St. Eustatius, Glenville Schmidt and Derrick Simmons will be appointed as commissioner to Statia’s Executive council. Government Commissioner Alida Francis meanwhile will continue to fulfil the role of the island’s Governor.
According to a press release from Government on Saturday morning, crucial steps have been taken towards the return to democracy. This is why the island is now ready to enter the next phase of the Provision Restoration Act St. Eustatius (Wet herstel voorzieningen Sint Eustatius), starting Monday, October 3rd.
In this phase, the Island Council will reacquire the authority to appoint and dismiss the members of the Island Council. Both commissioners to be appointed are from on behalf of the Progressive Labour Party (PLP).
A Royal Decree to enter the second phase of the Restoration Act was signed on Thursday by King Willem-Alexander.
According to the same press release, the conditions to allow the start of phase 2 are met. Per the Act Restoration Provisions St. Eustatius this was required to be able to appoint Commissioners. All the island ordinances have been adopted and entered into force. The procedures and work instructions of the Island Council are renewed, the work processes and the system for the issuing of permits and exemptions are updated.
In phase 2, the Island Council can exercise its right to ask questions, call for an emergency debate, and has the power to dismiss members of the Island Council, for example after passing a resolution of no confidence in the member concerned.
Once the Commissioners are appointed by the Island Council, they will form the Executive Council together with the Government Commissioner. The Government Commissioner continues to perform the duties of the Island Governor and will also continue to chair the meetings of the Island Council.
The Government Commissioner remains responsible for the appointment, suspension and dismissal of civil servants through the Human Resources Unit. This also counts for Financial Management of the local administration, security and public order and crisis management.