Statia enters new administrative phase in preparation for elections

On February 15th  Mr. Marcolino Franco and Mr. Mervyn Stegers will both end their tenure as respectively Government Commissioner and Deputy Government Commissioner on the aforementioned date when a new administrative phase will begin with a main focus on preparations for the 2020 elections of the Island Council. This phase will be led by Mr. Marnix van Rij, who has been appointed by the Council of Ministers as the new Government Commissioner together with his deputy Mrs. Alida Francis.

Central Government Commissioner St. Eustatius

Mr. Mike Franco and Mr. Mervyn Stegers took office two years ago when the Temporary Act on Neglect of Duty in St Eustatius (Tijdelijke Wet Taakverwaarlozing Sint Eustatius) went into effect February 6th, 2018 resulting in the administrative intervention by the Dutch government. The first phase focused on rebuilding the island’s infrastructure as well as reorganizing its civil service core.  “Statia is on the right track. Almost all of the infrastructural and organizational projects are in the implementation phase or will be completed in 2020”, states Mr. Franco.

Franco and Stegers are of the opinion that a great deal has been achieved these past two years and acknowledge that there is still work to do. “Civil servants and the wider community are encouraged to continue working together in order to achieve these very important milestones in Statia’s  development”, states Mr. Stegers. To ensure a smooth continuation of the process Franco and Stegers along with the Directors and Unit Managers of the Public Entity St. Eustatius will work together to ensure there is a smooth transfer of the tasks that have already been set in motion and nearing completion.

Mr. Marnix van Rij and Mrs. Alida Francis will officially take over the current tasks effective February 15th.  Mr. van Rij was a member of the First Chamber from June 2015 until June 2019 and a partner at Ernst & Young until July 2019. In his current function he is a strategic advisor for the Ministry of Interior and Kingdom Relations in the Caribbean Netherlands on Bonaire.

The new deputy government commissioner Mrs. Alida Francis was born and raised on St. Eustatius and has been working in the Caribbean for thirty years. In her latest position she was employed by RCN communication and she made an important contribution to the reconstruction of St. Eustatius after Hurricane Irma.