Hamlet: ‘St. Martin needs to be treated equally with France’

MARIGOT–Député candidate Jacques Hamlet promises if he is elected in the Parliamentary Elections on June 10 and 17, he will be “the interface between the government and the people of St. Martin and St. Barths.”

The well-known SOS Radio talk show host, who keeps his finger on the pulse of everyday St. Martin politics, had an unsuccessful run in 2012 but this time his desire to defend the interests of St. Martin has “intensified” greatly, as he puts it.

His running mate for the elections is Abigail Pavot.

“Both islands need real representation within the Republic of France,” he said. “Whatever comes up in Parliament at the national level we must make sure it does not affect us here in the overseas territories. We need to be represented equally within France. Just because we are 8,000km away that does not mean we are not French. We are French and need to be treated as such.”

He said many issues need to be dealt with: revising the Organic Law, implementing more professional training programmes, a school of second chances as President François Hollande had advocated, and much more.

“We need good tax reforms for the businesses to function; social charges are too high, and the unemployment rate is sky rocketing. A recent report indicated 47 per in the 15 to 25 year age bracket are unemployed and not trained.

“We have to maintain our tourism industry, and promote agriculture and fisheries industries as complementary to tourism. These are all issues that are pushing me today to be the voice for St. Martin and St. Barths.”

He said previous Députés had not produced results and suggested that is borne out this time around by an unprecedented 13 candidates vying for the seat in the National Assembly.

“People have seen me on all fronts defending the interests of St. Martin and here I am again. More than ever we need to bring the information up to Parliament, but we need to bring it back down to the people. This is what previous Députés have failed to do.

“Because you are in France, when you come back the people want to know what you are doing, what you are achieving. You can only fight for causes that the people give you to fight, but I’m going to be the spokesperson for the people. I’ve done my homework during the past five years and I’m the best prepared candidate for these elections.”

He added his preparation including working with professors in Guadeloupe as well as members of the Dutch-side Parliament, several of whom have given him their support as have other prominent Dutch-side figures.

Source: The Daily Herald https://www.thedailyherald.sx/islands/66695-hamlet-st-martin-needs-to-be-treated-equally-with-france