Philipsburg; Following their meetings on 14 June, 2018 with various stakeholders on the island regarding the ongoing hurricane recovery and the Trust Fund, Ombudsmen Dr. Arduin and Mr. van Zutphen, have issued a joint letter to Prime Ministers Leona Romeo-Marlin of Sint Maarten and Mark Rutte of the Netherlands urging both heads of government to speed up the recovery process.
Letter to Prime Ministers
In a letter dated 6 July, 2018 the Ombudsmen inform the Prime Ministers that they have been working closely together for a long time in solving complaints and in sharing knowledge and experience in the Kingdom. The letter goes on to say that considering that both the Dutch government and the government of Sint Maarten are involved in the reconstruction of Sint Maarten in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, the Ombudsmen want to jointly express their concerns on the current situation. According to Arduin and van Zutphen, the recovery needs to be tackled with greater speed in order to protect the citizens of Sint Maarten in the hurricane season that has already started. The Ombudsmen are of the opinion that a system should be in place aimed at improving the actual situation of the citizens of Sint Maarten as quickly as possible so that there is sufficient protection and safety during a subsequent hurricane.
The letter concludes by calling on the governments of Sint Maarten and the Netherlands to improve cooperation and to act effectively in the interests of the citizens of Sint Maarten.