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Knops: no deal with World Bank yet

THE HAGUE - Almost five months after the passing of Hurricane Irma the Netherlands still does not have an agreement with the World Bank about the reconstruction of St. Maarten, the Volkskrant reports. Pending that agreement the island has already ...

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Dear Reader

On social media we see unconfirmed reports about the huge debts of Dominican airline company PAWA to the tune of over RD$230 million dollars. That is almost $5 million US Dollars.

With these amount of outstanding debts, it is no surprise that airport authorities in the Dominican Republic are clamping down on airlines, even Sunrise Airways, that apparently had a $14,000 USD bill unpaid in the DR, which had to be settled before its Airbus aircraft could depart the country again yesterday.

The plight of passengers stranded in the Dominican Republic continues to be serious problem. Based on the news coming out of the DR, there doesn't seem to be any solutions forthcoming anytime soon. Passengers will have to find other ways to get back home on their own volition.

With 77% of yesterday's polltakers saying NO to government's involvement in the air transportation business, it is up to the consumers to find ways and means to protect themselves financially when it comes to air travel in the Caribbean. Travel insurance is one such means of protection one should seriously consider taking out when traveling.

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The Caribbean demand: obey me or else

By Chris Morvan ~ There is a character trait I've noticed in other parts of the Caribbean that I was dismayed to find exists here: the official's need to be obeyed. By "official" I mean anyone in any walk of life who is in charge of something.

Read more Government News
Local parliamentarians over 4,000 times more expensive

PHILIPSBURG/THE HAGUE - "It is difficult to explain why parliamentarians and ministers n St. Maarten - the smallest country in the Kingdom - receive the highest salaries," State Secretary Raymond Knops wrote on Tuesday in answers to questions...

Read more Cartoon
Waterbenders battle Cole Bay fire

Cartoon celebrating true heroes of St. Maarten

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TelCell Night of the Hit Makers to showcase April 28

Line-up for Carnival's flagship show announced "live" online Pond Island- Performing artistes, Burning Flames, Jah Cure, T-Vice and local favourites, The Control Band, will be headlining this year's TelCell Night of the Hit Makers flagship show...

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Smart Conversation a Talk Show developed for the community

SMART CONVERSATION, is a thought provoking, interactive, informative and knowledge focused one-hour talk show with two dynamic co-hosts, Dr. Natasha Gittens, Ph.D. and the Real Deal Cuchi the Captain. The show airs every Friday and debuts on...

Read more Police News
Man commits suicide

Philipsburg - On Tuesday, January 30th, at approximately 11.10 a.m., police patrols and detectives were directed to Old Simpson Bay Road #36 to investigate a case of a man who had hung himself. On the scene the investigating officers located a...

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New Pediatrician at SMMC: Dr. Morvan

CAYHILL: The St. Maarten Medical Center (SMMC) is pleased to announce the in service of Pediatrician Dr. Thibisay Morvan as of December 21st, 2017. Dr. Morvan brings 20 years of experience to the SMMC with the enthusiasm to utilize her knowledge...

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MHF launches new website. Appointments can be made online...

CAY HILL - On Friday, the Mental Health Foundation (MHF) launched it's new, now modern website, created by Daphne Wong A Foe - a 19 year old Dutch student from the The Hague University of Applied Sciences (THUAS), MHF announced on Tuesday.

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Mental Health Foundation presents Love & Semicolon projects

CAY HILL - On March 9 th & 10 th, the Mental Health Foundation (MHF) presents Love & Semicolon (Friday, March 9 th at 7pm), Green Thumbs Project (Saturday, March 10 th at 9am), and Beautifying M.H.F. (Saturday at 12pm) through SXM DOET.

Read more Cruise News
MSC Cruises makes an early return to Port St. Maarten

PORT ST. MAARTEN - MSC Divina cruise ship from MSC Cruises made an unscheduled port call on Tuesday morning January 30. The cruise line was scheduled to return to the destination on March 28, more than two months away. Port St. Maarten Management ...

Read more Legal Reviews
Ombudsman starts Systemic Investigation Rent Committee

Philipsburg - The Bureau of the Ombudsman continues to receive visits from citizens concerned about their housing conditions, as well as complaints about the Rent Committee allegedly not cooperating or responding adequately when addressed by the...

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The Cooperative Association explained

Under the law of Sint Maarten it is possible to form a co-operative association (coöperatieve vereniging, or coöperatie) also called a co-operative. The co-operative is a distinct legal entity, a special kind of association, formed by two or more ...

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The Motion of No Confidence

In general a Motion is a question or issue put to a vote in Parliament expressing its position on a particular topic or issue, its feelings or view, a desire or an instruction of Parliament on any particular subject. A Motion must be submitted in ...

Read more Opinions
"Robo-calls" by Hilbert Haar
I’m still not sure whether the guerilla warfare that is currently underway to convince voters to choose a particular party on February 26 is because of Hurricane Irma our political parties do not have wealthy sponsors anymore to finance their expensive billboards or that it’s because we have entered a new era in political campaigning fueled by technology.

This thought came up after reports emerged about robo-calls and complaints to telecom provider UTS about these unsolicited calls. UTS quickly explained that it had not sold its phone numbers to any political party; instead, the provider noted, robots are used to generate random phone numbers. Once they connect and the phone is picked up, the receiver hears a pre-recorded message.

A Facebook post by the inevitable Gromyko Wilson suggests that the United Democrats are using this technology to reach out to voters; Wilson posted that he had received an election message this way from MP Sarah Wescot-Williams.

The question on many people’s mind is now whether the United Democrats are violating privacy legislation with these unsolicited calls; and if this is the case, what receivers of these calls can do against it.

St. Maarten has a law that protects the privacy of citizens. This national ordinance mainly sets the rules for processing personal data, but it does not say anything about computer generated cold calls.

A couple of years ago, I worked on a project that I thought would be interesting for – for instance – security companies. I started compiling a database of felons and the verdicts against them. Interesting background information for companies who want to know whom they are hiring. But I soon found out that creating that information is against the law – so I dropped it.

In the Netherlands, consumers are able to protect themselves against unsolicited phone calls by registering in the national do-not-call registry. The law that underpins this registry was established nine years ago, in 2009. It obliges telemarketeers to check the register before they make a call. If you’re in the registry, they are not allowed to call you.

The robo-calls that are now ambushing the electorate in St. Maarten are (probably) not against the law. It is a cheap way to reach voters, but whether the receivers of those calls appreciate the method is another matter altogether.

What happened to political candidates going door to door to talk to people face to face?

It would be interesting to get an opinion about the question whether what these robots do is the same as processing personal data. After all, the robot generates random phone numbers and when it finds one that actually exists, it makes the connection. If the robot processes information that falls under our privacy legislation, the question becomes relevant who is responsible for these actions. To me, the answer is clear: the party that uses this technology.

The problem with all this is that it is up to the recipients of unsolicited calls to take action and a situation only gets corrected after the fact; that’s how this works in the Netherlands.

In St. Maarten, it is currently questionable whether consumers are protected under our privacy legislation against unsolicited phone calls.

And I don’t think anyone will soon hear a recorded message like this one: “Hi, I’m Chanel Brownbill and I am a candidate for the United Democrats. Vote for me! I’m all for transparency so you may know that I have to appear in criminal court because I ducked taxes to the tune of 1.2 million guilders over the past eight years, but I want you to know that I didn’t do anything wrong. Trust me, and vote for me on February 26.” Dutch Caribbean News
Prime Minister summons Consul General Venezuela

WILLEMSTAD - Prime Minister Eugene Rhuggenaath has summoned the Venezuelan Consul General Mrs. Marisol Gutiérrez de Almeida at Fort Amsterdam. During their meeting, the government of Curaçao has requested the government of Venezuela, through the...

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Coast Guard intercepts Venezuelan shrimp

WILLEMSTAD - The Coast Guard intercepted a Curaçao boat with 33 crates of shrimp on board. It is suspected that the 'Don Martin' took over the cargo from a smuggler boat that met it halfway through Venezuela. Upon return, the vessel was...

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Dutch cabinet offers support to tourism entrepreneurs

The Hague- Tourism on the Dutch islands of Saba and St. Eustatius has been hit hard since September last year, as a result of hurricanes Irma and Maria. Not only because of the damage sustained on the islands themselves, but also due to the...

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Another earthquake of a 4.0 Magnitude

THE BOTTOM - Due to a possible increase of earth movements, a team of the seismological department of the Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute(KNMI) visited Saba January 26 to place extra seismic measurement instruments on the island....

Read more Poll

Yes - 7.7%
No - 76.9%
It can't be any worst than it is now - 15.4%

Poll sponsored by, where you too can be a happy and satisfied customer like Bill, who also just yesterday asked us to send an electrician as well, after our refrigerator handyman successfully installed his new fridge. Our next handyman project: installing hurricane shutters.
Before retiring one should first become a MP or Minister to get a generous pension package too
Totally agree

The Management of NV GEBE hereby informs the general public the following regarding disconnection:

  • Disconnection will resume as per February 5, 2018.
  • Customers with outstanding bills are advised to pay prior to the above mentioned date to avoid being disconnected.
  • Customers that require a payment installment plan are advised to visit our office prior to the above mentioned date. A down payment of 1/3 of the outstanding bills will be required to obtain the payment plan.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us at 542-2213, 546-1100, 546-1160 or via our toll free number 1-844-432-3213 or e-mail us at: Our business hours are 7:45am to 3pm Mondays to Fridays. The Philipsburg and Simpson Bay branch are available for payment plans, payment of bills and other customer related inquires. Advertisement

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Email for more information.             Online News Stories
Second Simpson Bay Lagoon clean-up organized by EPIC

Simpson Bay - After the great success of the first Simpson Bay Lagoon clean-up on the 14th of January, Environmental Protection in the Caribbean (EPIC) and the St Maarten Nature Foundation are announcing the next event Simpson Bay Lagoon cleanup...

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Let's Cruise - Eastern, Western, Southern Caribbean... is offering cruise vacations on the best and biggest cruise ships in the world with brand name cruises and destinations in the Eastern, Western and Southern Caribbean, Alaska, Europe and the Mediterranean, ...

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Building Construction Trades Training Registration Drive

POND ISLAND - Thirty-three young men and women showed their interest by registering on Friday, January 26 th for the Building Construction Trades (BCT) training program. The initiative, a joint collaboration between the Division of Study...

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St. Maarten Student Represents at Trinidad Workshop

PHILIPSBURG - Local author and university student Ralph Cantave recently took part in the Caribbean Regional Youth Council's advocacy and policy workshop in Trinidad & Tobago on January 26 to 27th. St. Maarten was one of the 10 plus islands that...

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Milton Peters College student wins first place

REWARD - Aziza Vanterpool a 17 year old student of the Milton Peters College who was an on Island finalist in the FCCA children's Environmental Poster competition placed first in the senior division of the annual Florida Caribbean Cruise...

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The Philipsburg Jubilee Library adjusts their opening hours

In order to facilitate general staff meetings the Library will now open at 10.00 on Mondays instead of 9.00 am. So as of Monday February 5 th 2018, the library will be open on Mondays from 10 am to p.m. and from Tuesday to Friday from 9 am to...

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Why I needed an IB Education from St. Dominic High School

REWARD - This year marks 50 years of the International Baccalureate Diploma Programme. St. Dominic High School is marking that event by profiling two of its IB alumni - Shun Ying Tsui, an alumni from the first cohort of IB graduates in 2010 and...

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Seven men arrested for posing as tax inspectors in €2.2m con

Police and tax office investigators have arrested six men in Arnhem for defrauding at least 170 companies by posing as tax office officials. In total the suspects, who are aged 20 to 39, are thought to have conned their victims out of €2.2m.

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Wednesday, January 31st, 2018
Vacancy: Assistant Manager
Vacancy: Caregiver Letters
Hiram Beakes of Saba

by Jacob Gelt Dekker Sex, romance, and true love played out with Hiram Beakes. Hiram Beakes was a young man and a scion of the ruling family on the island of Saba. His story of licentious sex that turned into true love, stolen gold, ruthless...

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Why we are called Civil Servants

Dear Editor, The main motivation when postulating one's self to political party is to serve the people. It's why we are called Civil Servants. Unfortunately, however; not every postulated candidate shares this motivation. Also noticeable are...

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Why yes to Spadaro and not a basketball court for the youths

Dear Editor, Why is this interim cabinet hell-bent to destroy the approval granted by his predecessor CHRISTOPHE EMMANUEL of the NA to build the long awaited and promised basketball court for the youth of Fort Willem and St. Maarten as a whole?...

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Plan of Action for Mental Health Foundation Guided Living

Dear Mr. Editor, As a community spirited person and the former Minister of VROMI who believed in helping institutions such as the Mental Health Foundation, during my tenure I assisted the former with a parcel of land around the zoo to build their ...

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Time to put down the flag

Dear Editor, After hurricane Irma the site with the flagpole was set up. A lot has been said about the flagpole. Mostly about the costs of USD 150.000. Despite all the negative, I find it was good idea. From many areas in Simpson Bay you can see...

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Wealth tourism development in the Caribbean

By Cdr. Bud Slabbaert ~ "We want more private and business aircraft coming to our airport." - "You're right," I responded. "We're looking for a mover-and-shaker to do it" - "Good thing," I replied. "We were thinking of you!" - "Who me?". That was...

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Describing investors as "greedy" is not productive

By Robbie Ferron ~ More and more I am hearing investors in St. Maarten described as being greedy and exploitative. A posting on Facebook did this without nuance. Whilst in the early years investors in St. Maarten were welcomed uncritically in many...

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SXM Daily News - 30 Jan 2018
SXM Daily News January 30, 2018

SXM Daily News January 30, 2018

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With the high season upon us and more and more airlines are resuming flights to and from St. Maarten, we are also open to take your flight bookings to and from St. Maarten as well.
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