PHILIPSBURG, St. Maarten - I believe MP Cornelius de Weever got a little overzealous when he suggested placing the matter of reinstating St. Maarten on the UN's list of non-self governing territories on the IPKO agenda for next week. A move promptly endorsed by MP Meyers. This basically means re-listing St. Maarten as a colony.
For starters, the IPKO agenda is determined by consensus of all 4 parliaments.
More importantly however is the fact that in the context this proposal was brought by the Independence for St. Maarten Foundation, the reinstatement is to "facilitate international support for our quest for political freedom".
This decision on political freedom (independence) however is one yet to be taken by the people of St. Maarten.
The parliament in my opinion therefore is not (yet) in any position to lobby reinstatement of St. Maarten in the UN listing of non-self-governing territories.
So I caution against, even with our Curacao and Aruba counterparts, presenting this issue as one agreed to by the parliament and people of St. Maarten.
Again, in my opinion, 6 years of country status are insufficient to start on a new political process.
Not only that, but the many challenges ahead require our best efforts and undivided attention.
One of those challenges is the devising of a roadmap to take St. Maarten to the next stage of its development. A roadmap, I again emphasize, that should place a lot of emphasis on nation building, inclusion and social cohesion.