It is Christmas time again and nothing fills us with more hope, with a sense of family than this season of light, this season of joy and celebration, this season of praise.
The civil service corps is part of that larger St. Maarten family that seldom gets praised nor recognized for the work they do.
No government can function effectively without an efficient and dedicated civil service corps. Yet for all your hard work and commitment you, our civil servants do not always get the respect you deserve.
I, therefore, take this opportunity to say a big thank you to all our civil servants and government workers for your contribution throughout the years.
We often speak of stability in government, yet the only guarantee of that stability is a well-prepared, committed and professional civil service corps.
Whatever achievements any government can boast of can be attributed in large part to the consistent productivity of the civil servants who have to advise on, prepare and execute most of the policies government wants to pursue.
As the backbone of the St. Maarten government administration, you must be proud of your invaluable contribution to the progress of our island, in spite of the well-known financial and other constraints you have had to deal with and still have to face in these lean times.
I am proud of each and every one of you and wish we could do more to reward you for your labor of love.
Let me borrow the words of US novelist, journalist and humorist, Oren Arnold, who famously gave the following Christmas gift suggestions: “To your enemy, forgiveness. To an opponent, tolerance. To a friend, your heart. To a customer, service. To all, charity. To every child, a good example. To yourself, respect.”
On behalf of the entire Council of Ministers and myself, I wish you a very Merry and Joyous Christmas. Happy Holidays! Enjoy the treats; enjoy the gifts; go easy on the guavaberry and the sorrel, but above all enjoy your family.