Statia’s Island Council again very critical of alleged lack of communication and information

Statia’s Island Council again very critical of alleged lack of communication and information
Councilman Clyde van Putten addressing the Island Council on Thursday

ORANJESTAD- The fractions of the Progressive Labour Party (PLP) and Independent Fraction Sneek on Thursday again showed themselves very critical of what they called a lack of communication and information for the Island Council on important matters.

After Thursday’s meeting was adjourned, the PLP put out a statement, criticizing what had transpired and the alleged lack of communication and information. 

“The executive branch of government has an obligation to inform the island council thoroughly and timely about all matters affecting the community. This active information duty cannot be delayed nor substituted for any other course of action. Without complete and timely information, the council cannot exercise its authority to control the actions of government’, according to PLP.

The party also points to the fact that for some time now the Island Council has been complaining about the failure of government to inform it completely and timely. “Oftentimes, information is not forthcoming at all on matters that come before the council. Council members are sometimes left to discover information in the media, from third parties or on government’s Facebook page. This is unacceptable”.

Audit Chamber

The Island Council on Thursday found themselves at opposing ends with the Government Commissioners when it came to the appointment of members of the so-called Audit Chamber. Both PLP and Sneek supported a motion saying the nominated members would not be appointed until clarity is provided by the Second Chamber of the Dutch parliament about the legal basis for the institution. 

The parties are of the opinion that there is no legal basis for a separate Audit Chamber for the island.  “The law provides for a joint audit chamber for Bonaire, Saba and St. Eustatius, not for a separate chamber for St. Eustatius”, states the PLP.

The parties were also upset about the fact that it seemed that Executive Council intended to swear in the audit chamber members during Thursday’s meeting This fact was not known to the council and it was not on the agenda; a fact that was decried by both factions.


The Island Council, angered by what they consistently label as a lack of transparency, communication and the provision of information to which local parliament is entitled, has adopted a second motion, calling for a ‘mediation’ between the Island Council and the Government Commissioners. 

The call for the mediation was triggered by a second agenda point on the agenda of the Island Council, name the path and timetable for a return to full democracy. The PLP and List Sneek consistently accuse Commissioner Alida Francis and her deputy Claudia Toet of obstruction of this important matter. 

“The PLP think it is unfortunate events transpired as they have in this meeting but at times it is necessary to take a firm stand on the actions of government officials which only serve to delay progress for the island, especially where it concerns the desire to return to full democratic government. The PLP faction will continue to stand with the people and defend their best interest”, according to the press release sent out on Thursday. 

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