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Country package: Retirement age to 66 in 2025

PHILIPSBURG - St. Maarten will increase the retirement age to 66 in 2025, "unless independent research shows that this is not necessary and there are alternative proposals with the same budgetary effect." This appears from the execution agenda of ...

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CX Pay B.V. partners with Cybersource for growth

MIAMI/WILLEMSTAD - Curaçao based CX Pay B.V. announced that the FinTech company has selected the payment and anti-fraud platform CyberSource, a Visa solution, to broaden its service offering, while further increasing its application's...

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How to get the most out of the website

Information on how to use and get the most out of ~ - Register for the Free Newsletter at You will not only become a member of the website but also receive the free email newsletter. Send...

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Leaked GEBE-documents disqualify Daniel for position of CEO

PHILIPSBURG - A rather astonishing 66 pages of internal documents of utilities company GEBE - letter, emails and other documents - have been leaked to the media through SX Leaks from a Gmail address with the same name. While the company may want...

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Power struggle at GEBE turns ugly

PHILIPSBURG - Working at utilities company GEBE remains a minefield. That much is clear after the recent court case against Sharine Daniel and the even more recent dismissal of temporary manager Mauricio Dembrook. The forces behind the scene that ...

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Wie zwijgt stemt toe

By Hilbert Haar ~ I honestly cannot remember a moment when there was no trouble at all at utilities company GEBE and I have followed the developments in energy-land closely for more than ten years. Being the managing director at GEBE seems to be...

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EXCLUSIVE- Letter to Council of Ministers Pokes Holes in ...

Exclusively on SXM Talks, articles by Ralph Cantave ** In newly surfaced documents, the Council of Ministers was sent a letter on October 15, 2021 regarding the employment disputes of N.V. GEBE and the head of the internal audit department,...

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Chris asks who choose Lara Mateo to represent country

St Maarten's Miss World representative Lara Mateo. ~ Takes issue with delegate sitting on flag ~ PHILIPSBURG--Spain-born Lara Mateo's representation of St. Maarten in the upcoming Miss World Pageant came under question on Monday when Independent...

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Comité Miss Saint-Martin on Unknown Miss World Contestant for St. Maarten/St. Martin

Dear followers, dear public,

Because the question has often been raised we would like to address it generally:

The “Comité Miss Saint-Martin” is in no way involved in the participation of any contestant (male or female) representing Saint-Martin or Sint-Maarten in any international pageant be it Miss Universe, Miss World or any Mister pageant for the 2021-2022 season.

Concerning our participation for Miss France in December, for those who may not be aware, our region is still in rotation with the region of “Saint-Pierre et Miquelon” every other year. Our participation last year was exceptional so it’s simply not our turn this year.

We can assure you that any involvement on our part in any pageant of any kind would always and naturally include a communication that honors our destination, our potential ambassador but that also enables to continue building the relationship that we have established with you (the public) overtime to the best of our ability as it has always been the case.

In the present context that’s a bit heavy for our French West Indies regions but also for the entire French community as a whole, we are sure you will understand that this is somewhat of an “off” period for each of our team members but we really want to thank you for your enthusiasm and the attention you grant to our committee.

This is also what gives meaning to our commitment to promote our territories through the spectrum of elegance that, according to us, is also (all together now for the slogan! Lol) “a road to excellence”.

We wish you all great courage in the present times.

See you all for new adventures whenever they will be made possible again.

The “Comité Miss Saint-Martin”
Miss St. Maarten 1999 and former Miss World contestant: Ife Badejo on 2021 Miss World contestant for St. Maarten/St. Martin

Dear St. Maarten,

Early this morning I received a video that has perplexed many on this island concerning the Miss World representative for St. Maarten. The outrage has reached the highest level of this nation, Parliament. There has even been a news article and cycle about this. As Miss World St. Maarten 1999, I am compelled to make a statement.

The questions that MP Christophe Emmanuel posed in yesterday's parliamentary meeting are accurate. Who is the license holder for St. Maarten? Was there a pageant? When and where? In essence, how was this representative chosen?

It is a true honor to represent any country at this level. It has the potential to bring awareness and resources to the participating country and it's related topics with millions of viewers watching. When done correctly, can be a driver for economic growth and support causes in unique ways. Should the Miss win the pageant, it can be even more powerful to the country, having an ambassador represent it all over the world.

Countries like Venezuela and India have major fashion and film industries (economic drivers) that fuel and are fueled by these major global competitions.

I was honored and still am to show case and show off my island. To do so at the Miss World 1999, I had to be crowned Miss World St. Maarten which in my year included a local pageant.

I also had to prepare after I won for the international pageant. We got a trainer from Venezuela who trained me on how to walk, model, pose for that level of competition. I had several local experts train me on media, press, etiquette, and train my body to be prepared for that level of competition. I was also engaged with public through press junkets before I left for the competition. We even hosted a fundraising concert to ensure I had all the resources needed. The island routed for me then and I am forever grateful for the love. To this day I am in contact with many of the 93 other women who competed in our year, whatsapp chat and all.

Does the license holder need to be held accountable? Yes! These questions need to be answered. What's the role of the young woman in all of this? In my opinion, she is innocent.

So who's responsible ultimately? We are. This includes the highest levels of our nation. We can't be upset at the things we allow. This is the result of a lack of national support for these international pageants. These women often are seen as just beauty queens instead of Ambassadors. It should never be that a person holds the license and the COUNTRY doesn't know who this person is. Especially when the representative at the pageant, represents the country.

Here are my recommendations moving forward:

- Either we, SXM, both sides decide we are going to intentionally and financially support international pageants or we write a collective letter to the Miss Universe, Miss World, Miss International (Big 3) and let them know that no license holder can represent the island without government endorsement.

- If we choose to participate, we need to decide how the budget will be allocated and have that money ready. This budget should be multi-ministerial and public private funded. With license, marketing, training of girls, you are looking at about USD$100 000 alone.

- We also need to be intentional about which pageant(s) would give the most return on the investment. Aruba did not take part in Miss World however was in the top 10 for Miss Universe. That could be strategic.

- There should be policy in place of who can be endorsed as license holder (preferably someone who knows about pageantry, marketing, and budgets and not in government).

- Policy on the role and involvement of government in supporting these pageants should be in place.

- An organization (3-5 ppl) should be created to monitor the process and ensure that the girls are being properly trained (include history, culture, media, etiquette, modelling, etc) and that the money is spent wisely. Reporting should be mandatory from the organization to government.

There are other queens and pageant coordinators who are professionals, engage us and get our feedback.

I understand the outcry, I truly do. Still, we are responsible for this and so many other things we allow to happen right under our noses.

The good news is that now we have the opportunity to do so something about it.

Why should we care?
The role of pageants in shaping culture, beauty, and economy is unquantifiable when done correctly. On the flip side, pageantry can be nefarious business. Let's make sure that we do it right on behalf of everyone. - Publisher's Note
A Missed Opportunity

If a young lady is representing St. Maarten/St. Martin in the Miss World pageant and she was not selected, appointed or nominated to be the ambassador for St. Maarten/St. Martin on this world's beauty stage, then it is a missed opportunity not only for her but for St. Maarten/St. Martin as well.

The big question now is who is the license holder for the Miss World pageantry on St. Maarten/St. Martin and who selected, appointed or nominated this young lady to represent St. Maarten/St. Martin? Political News
MP Emmanuel asks if civil servants will get GEBE relief

PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten - Independent Member of Parliament Christophe Emmanuel on Monday said that his over 200 questions on the 2022 budget are "people centric" considering the amount of suffering being endured in the country. "People don't...

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Never a dull moment

By Hilbert Haar ~ A political crisis? I don't think so. Of course, it is unique that the only two members of the United St. Maarten party (USp) - Claudius Buncamper and Akeem Arrindell - have declared themselves independent, and that as a result...

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USP seeking clarification on proportional representation

PHILIPSBURG - The board of the United St. Maarten Party Party (USP) will seek further clarification into what it deems as a serious constitutional issue after both of its MP's, Claudius Buncamper and Akeem Arrindell, declared themselves as...

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PFP against efforts to silence MPs, rush through the budget

Faction proposes to extend debates into Parliament recess ~ PHILIPSBURG - With only one week left before Parliament goes on recess, Party for Progress (PFP) Members of Parliament (MPs) Melissa Gumbs and Raeyhon Peterson are spearheading a...

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MP Christophe Emmanuel: Coalition seeking greener pastures

PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten - Independent Member of Parliament Christophe Emmanuel is of the opinion that government's lack of empathy towards the people of St. Maarten and its disconnect from the common man has been re-enforced through its words...

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SIJS & Prosecutor's Office update Minister Richardson

PHILIPSBURG - The Stichting Justitiële Inrichtingen St. Maarten (SJIS) and the St. Maarten Prosecutor's Office (OM SXM) recently updated to Justice Minister of Justice Anna E. Richardson about the ongoing Domestic Violence and Mediation...

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Voluntary Korps of St Maarten empowered with 18 new soldiers

PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten - On Sunday, December 12, the Voluntary Korps of St. Maarten (VKS) held its graduation ceremony at the Sundial Schoolwhere 18 of its new members were sworn in as VKS Soldiers after an intense 9-month training. The...

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Minimum Earners SXM last place in the Dutch Caribbean

PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten - Certified Risk Analyst, Terence Jandroep CRA CQA CLA, has concluded a study on the "small man" economic platform in the Dutch Caribbean and observed a very disturbing trend in Sint Maarten over the period 2017-2020....

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New Uniforms Immigration and Border Protection Mobile Unit

PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten - The Immigration and Border Protection Services Mobile Control Unit have received newly designed work uniforms on Monday, December 6th. The uniform change, which carries the organizational logo, were as a result of the...

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Life Insurance, the why and the why not

Life insurance is insurance based on a specific payment to one or more beneficiaries upon the passing of the insured. The reasons that motivate people to take out insurance on their lives can be many and have far-reaching consequences. First,...

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Philipsburg Property For Sale

Photo caption: Property located on the Backstreet no.18 in Philipsburg, St. Maarten. Property located on the Backstreet no.18 in Philipsburg, St. Maarten and is registered at the Cadastre office with Certificate of Admeasurement number PB...

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MHF and WYCCF renew their successful collaboration

SINT MAARTEN (ST. JOHN'S ESTATE) - On Thursday, December 9, 2021, the Mental Health Foundation (MHF) and White and Yellow Cross Care Foundation (WYCCF) signed a three-year service level agreement to ensure continued collaboration. The two...

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Mid Isle donates to Island Hoops Foundation

SINT MAARTE (PHILIPSBURG) - On December 11th, 2021, the Rotary Club of Sint Maarten- Mid Isle, donated a cheque of USD $1.000 to the Island Hoops Foundation. Island Hoops is a not-for-profit Foundation, which was founded in 2015. Island Hoops is...

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11th Annual Winter Graduation & Demonstration of BJJ SXM

SINT MAARTEN (COLE BAY) - Brazilian Jiu Jitsu on St Maarten reached another milestone this week with the 11th Annual Winter graduation and Demonstration for the youth Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) students. Students demonstrated techniques in front...

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'Bevriezing lonen ambtenaren'

IMF adviseert Curaçao invoering btw-stelsel Van een onzer verslaggeversWillemstad - Bevriezing van de ambtenarenlonen, om de begrotingsuitgaven binnen de perken te houden. Dat is wat zowel de regering-Pisas op Curaçao als de regering-Jacobs van...

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Aruba houdt grens met Venezuela dicht

Redacteur 64 0 ORANJESTAD - De overheid van Aruba houdt de grens met Venezuela potdicht. In ieder geval de komende drie maanden. Immigratie Dat heeft de regering van Evelyn Wever-Croes dit weekend besloten. De grens tussen beide landen is al...

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'Luchtvervoer naar Saba en Sint Eustatius moet duurzaam...

Dick Drayer 247 0 Nederland is voorstander van een openbare dienstverplichting voor luchtvervoer tussen de Bovenwindse eilanden Saba en Sint Eustatius met Sint Maarten. Die verplichting stelt voorwaarden aan de vluchtfrequentie en de ticketprijs. ...

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Ombudsman SXM: Nederlands hulpgeld orkaan Irma muurvast

Door Kim Hendriksen/Caribisch Netwerk Philipsburg - Het geld dat Nederland na orkaan Irma vier jaar geleden beschikbaar heeft gesteld voor de wederopbouw van Sint Maarten, zit volgens Ombudsman Gwendolien Mossel nog steeds muurvast. "Het systeem...

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MEP probeert debat over omstreden gasdeal te voorkomen

Oranjestad - In een poging een openbare vergadering van de Staten over de omstreden gasdeal, die het kabinet Wever-Croes met het Amerikaanse Eagle LNG heeft gesloten, te voorkomen, heeft parlementsvoorzitter Edgard Vrolijk (MEP) de fracties...

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Vakbonden voeren druk op regering Aruba op

Oranjestad - De vakbonden van overheidspersoneel hebben hun leden opgeroepen vanochtend niet aan het werk te gaan, maar naar het lineair park te komen om te demonstreren tegen de weigering van het kabinet Wever-Croes de korting van 12,6% op de...

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Werkdruk ambtenaren hoog

'Kleinschaligheid eilanden zorgt voor unieke uitdagingen' Van onze correspondentDen Haag - ,,In Den Haag zijn er spreekwoordelijk tien ambtenaren voor elk dossier en op de eilanden liggen er eerder tien dossiers bij elke ambtenaar." Met die...

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Transparant en openbaar

Door Peter Kavelaars ~ In het kader van bestrijden van het ontgaan van belasting door multinationals heeft de OESO alweer enkele jaren geleden de zogenoemde fiscale CbC-reporting naar voor geschoven ofwel Country-by-Countryreporting: het gaat er...

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Minister of Labour Ottley Encourages Job Seekers ...

SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) - On Saturday December 18th, Ballast Nedam International Projects in collaboration with the Ministry of VSA, the Princess Juliana International Airport (PJIA) and the National Institute for Professional Advancement...

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T-MO & Bell to highlight "Philipsburg Becomes Magical" event

SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) - Philipsburg will come alive this upcoming weekend when the "Philipsburg Becomes Magical" holiday event is expected to instill special seasonal energy in the capital of St. Maarten. With legendary singer King T-MO...

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This Holiday Season: Shop Smart, Shop Safe

Every year the Collective Prevention Services (CPS), a department within the Ministry of Public Health, Social Development and Labour (Ministry VSA), as part of its annual calendar of observances, highlights and creates awareness about safe...

Read more now offering shared charters to St. Kitts & Nevis

Shared charter rates from $260 US Dollars per one-way and up for groups of up to seven (7) passengers + one piece of checked luggage and one carry-on each. Submit a reservation request online at

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St. Maarten/St. Martin Babe Ruth Baseball Christmas Clinic

SINT MAARTEN (GREAT BAY) - The St. Maarten/St. Martin Babe Ruth Baseball and Softball Association is hosting its first 'Babe Ruth Christmas Clinic' starting Saturday 18 December 2021 thru Friday 24 December 2021 at the Little League Ballpark, the ...

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Primary schools set to close early, evening lockdown to...

Prime minister Mark Rutte and health minister Hugo de Jonge are expected to announce that primary schools will close on Friday for the winter break at Tuesday evening's press conference, Dutch media report. The government's Outbreak Management...

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Dutch coalition deal agreed, 271 days after ...

The four parties planning to extend their current alliance and form a new government in the Netherlands have finalised their agreement, party leaders said on Monday evening. The right wing Liberal VVD, Liberal democratic party D66, the Christian...

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Need a Shared Charter to Curacao?
AirStMaarten now offering shared charters to Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao starting at $2000 USD per seat.
It is smarter to charter!
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