Organic Law can work for St. Martin – people have to come together in the interest of the country.
Marigot:—- Dignitaries that attended the Bastille Day celebration on Friday braved the rain and walked from the Catholic Church to the Collectivity of St. Martin with their umbrellas to lay wreaths at the memorial site in the garden of the Collectivity of St. Martin after which they moved to the Marigot waterfront where the official speeches were pronounced as St. Martin celebrated the annual Bastille Day and its 10th anniversary since gaining their new status.
Those that joined the French dignitaries for the annual celebration were Governor Eugene Holiday along with First Lady Marie- Louise, President of Parliament Sarah Wescot Williams and Deputy Prime Minister Rafael Boasman.
Wreaths were laid by the representatives of the veterans, President of the Collectivity Daniel Gibbes, Senator Guillaume Arnel, Deputy Claire Javois, and Sous Prefette Anne Laubies.
President Daniel Gibbs said that an audit will be done for the Collectivity both for the staff and finances in order for his government to execute the projects they committed themselves to. He said that one of the key factors of building the French side is for politicians to come together and to ensure they enforce Article 74 of the Organic Law. President Gibbes said he is a firm believer of article 74 and if everyone put their hearts and soul together in the interest of St. Martin the economy will grow and there will be a brighter future for the younger generation. He said he is currently in fierce discussion with the State to ensure that St. Martin get all its competences based on what is laid down in Article 74 which will enable St. Martin to further detach itself from Guadeloupe. President Gibbes said besides that better working relationships and cooperation with their Dutch counterparts will also assist greatly. He made clear that it is important that the two sides work closely even if they do not always agree.
The President who pronounced two speeches on Friday, the first in commemoration of Bastille Day and the other for the 10th anniversary since St. Martin obtained its new status said that it is imperative for all elected officials on the French side including stakeholders work together to better the country. He paid tribute to the late Aline Hanson and Pierre Brange that is currently in France on medical. President Gibbes said Brange was a key person in the Collectivity of St. Marten, he was the one that worked with him as a young politician as they all came together to draft the Organic Law article 74. President further explained that while there is a handful of people that is against article 74 he is a firm believer of the Article that governs St. Martin, but one thing that has to be accomplished is the competences as laid out in the law.
Prefette Anne Laubies shared almost the same sentiments as she said that one can either look at the glass half full or half empty but she prefers to look at it as half full because in her view St. Martin has come a long way but stressed that more has to be done to fully implement article 74. Laubies said that article 74 may not be perfect it is same as many other laws but people have to make what the law entails work for them. Laubies also paid tribute to Aline Hanson whom she said loved her country and did everything she could to better improve St. Martin.
She also focused on cooperation between the French and Dutch sides and how important it is for the two sides to work closely.
Attention has to be paid to reduce delinquency and crime. Most importantly she said that elected officials have to stand together to fight their causes, unity is needed in order to achieve the most for St. Martin and its people.
Senator Guillaume Arnel in his remarks said that St. Martin is celebrating its 10th anniversary and people should not focus on who did what and how much was not done in the one decade but instead focus on the things that were done and also place emphasis on the things that have to be done to better improve the French side. He guaranteed President Gibbes and his team that he will join forces with the Deputy Claire Javois to push for St. Martin’s best interest.
The celebration on Friday included a movie that was created by the communications staff of the Collectivity to show what St. Martin was like 10 years ago prior to obtaining the status and what it is today.
After that a cocktail party was held, while other activities continues throughout the weekend as St. Martin continues to celebrate its 10th anniversary.
Source: St. Martin News Network
St. Martin Dignitaries braved rain to celebrate Bastille Day.