~ UD should request that Johnson step down ~
PHILIPSBURG–National Alliance (NA) Member of Parliament (MP) Christophe Emmanuel has called on Tourism, Economic Affairs, Transport and Telecommunications (TEATT) Minister Stuart Johnson to do the job that his political party has appointed him to do, or go home.
In a press statement on Sunday Emmanuel said those who “made the huge mistake” to appoint Johnson should be “considering immediately distancing themselves from him, and requesting him to vacate the post.”
Emmanuel said there is not much more that “the people of this country are willing to put up with, as far as the behaviour of this Minister is concerned.” According to him, up until now the only thing Johnson has been good at since being appointed is using every opportunity to play victim and seek pity from members of the community. “He then resorts to running his mouth, attempting to confuse the public with pure nonsensical statements and accusations.”
Emmanuel said it is very unfortunate that Johnson chooses this angle, while seeking to hide his incompetence as a Minister and the fact that his actions continue to bring great shame to St. Maarten. After being appointed, Johnson has displayed “pure irresponsibility and utter lack of respect or concern for the workers in his Ministry and the people of St. Maarten, by his inadequate handling of the job that he was appointed to carry out.
“Minister Johnson has, up until now, never attended a single committee meeting in Parliament that relates to his portfolio, but continues to lie and make excuses in order to get out of adhering to the call to Parliament.
“It has always been so, that Ministers are called to Parliament in order to report to the Members of Parliament, and to the people of St. Maarten, as far as it pertains to topics related to their Ministries. There are various committees in Parliament that relate to various Ministries. Each time that Minister Johnson is called to Parliament to meet with the committee that attends with his portfolio, for one reason or the other he suddenly gets cold feet and backs out, using weak excuses each time,” Emmanuel said.
While Johnson opts to stay away from Parliament, he is always quick to feel offended by statements made on the floor of Parliament, and then chooses to run to the press concerning these statements, while he himself should actually be in Parliament defending his portfolio instead of having other Ministers doing this for him, stated Emmanuel.
During his presentation on the floor of Parliament on Monday, January 21, Emmanuel said: “It was told to us that he [Johnson – Ed.] went on a trip. Now we are being told that it is a cruise. I would like to know if it is a family cruise, a gay cruise, a friendship cruise, what kind of cruise? A business cruise? I would like to know what kind of cruise.”
Emmanuel said at no time was mention made of the Minister’s sexuality or lifestyle, as that is his choice.
“As far the people of this country can see, this is another failed attempt by Minister Johnson to thwart the topics and hide behind his ineffectiveness to execute the task laid upon him as Minister. … It is obvious to everyone that it was Minister Johnson himself that targeted the Gay Cruise and LGBT group when he chose to only call out attention to that specific cruise and group, as opposed to the other three mentioned on the floor of Parliament.”
Emmanuel said that despite Johnson’s statement, he fails to believe that anyone, especially the groups mentioned by Johnson, could have listened to his questions in parliament and decide to pick out a word and consider this an attack by Emmanuel.
“The real embarrassment to the country and abuse of power took place when the same Minister Johnson allegedly tried to force himself and his ways on a male employee in his cabinet, requesting sexual favours and subsequently, when refused, considered himself scorned by the employee, and therefore immediately fired him from his position, and did not pay him up to this day for work-related services already rendered,” Emmanuel said.
“To this present date the Minister has never taken responsibility for his actions or apologised, but instead he opted to hide behind the disguise by saying that the matter is under investigation, even after the Prosecutor’s Office stated that no investigation is taking place.”
According to Emmanuel, this type of dangerous behaviour by Minister Johnson, who is a part of the highest serving body of this country, is what puts St. Maarten at risk, as it subjects the entire country to insults and shame both regionally and internationally.
Emmanuel continued: “Each Member of Parliament has been elected by the people of this country, and has thereby received the mandate of the people to speak in Parliament.
“Therefore, regarding the statement that persons or political parties should distance themselves from my statement, I would like the Minister to know that no leader or political party has to defend or represent me, as I am solely responsible for the questions that are posed by me on the floor of Parliament.
“Contrary, I would also like to let Minister Johnson know that those Members of Parliament, or the political party that made the huge mistake to appoint him, should be the ones considering immediately distancing themselves from him and requesting him to vacate the post.”
According to Emmanuel, amidst “the confusion” already surrounding Johnson, he also “appears overnight to have become the spokesperson for the LGBT community, and tried, in a failed attempt, to divert the topic from himself and create confusion by coming with an entire different topic than that which was discussed on the floor of Parliament.”
Emmanuel said, “Family cruises exist, gay cruises exist, business cruises exist – so what exactly is the problem here if ‘gay cruise’ is mentioned during deliberations? Should a Member of Parliament or anyone else now be afraid to use the word ‘gay’ because of an oversensitive member of the Council of Ministers?
“The gay cruises have become so common nowadays that maybe if I had left them out, for all you know, this may also have been an offence, and may have caused the Minister to also run to the press to complain that it was very discriminating of me to leave out that particular cruise during my presentation.”
Emmanuel said Johnson’s tactics to avoid the real issues would not work, and that, in the best interest of the public, Johnson should resign, as he has failed over and over again, and has proven that he is in over his head and cannot handle a function of this magnitude.
“The people of Sint Maarten truly deserve better,” Emmanuel said.
Source: The Daily Herald https://www.thedailyherald.sx/islands/84785-emmanuel-to-johnson-do-your-job-or-go-home