PHILIPSBURG – DP-MP Perry Geerlings took some heat from NA-parliamentarians yesterday morning with a remark about the absence of ministers in a public meeting. Geerlings made the remark after Prime Minister Boasman had excused Minister of Finance Richard Gibson and Minister of Tourism, Economic Affairs, Transport and Telecommunication Mellissa Arrindell-Doncher because of health reasons.

“The ministers that show up this morning show their respect for Parliament.” Geerlings said to the two Council of Ministers members that were present – Prime Minister Rafael Boasman and Public Health Minister Emil Lee. “That respect has been lacking for the past couple of weeks. It is annoying to see only the same ministers appear every time. I don’t care what the ailments of the other ministers are. If they call in sick again and again, maybe they should go to the Governor and ask him to give their job to someone else.”

NA-MPs George Pantophlet and Rodolphe Samuel reacted angrily to the statement. “I would like to repeat a statement from a member of Parliament. It says: I don’t care about the health of our ministers. I cannot believe that members of Parliament say that they don’t care about the health of their colleagues. How much worse is this gong to get? We never had this behavior in this Parliament before.” Samuel said. “Where is this coming from? Here in St. Maarten we always show concern for one another; and one of the first questions we ask is: how are you doing? Good morning, how are you?”

“If a member of Parliament does not care about the health of a minister, I wonder what else they can care about.” Samuel continued. “They say they don’t care about the health of the ministers and then they try to show as if they care about the people of this country. I ask the people to keep an eye on those persons.”

Photo caption: MP Perry Geerlings. Photo screenshot sxmparliament.org.

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