BES Summit focused on common interests, cooperation, say Island & Executive Councils

Fostering dialogue on formal cooperation and establishing joint positions on areas of common interest were of the main outcomes of the BES Summit, the Island and Executive Councils of Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba said in a joint press release on Wednesday.

The summit of elected and appointed officials of the three so-called BES island took place on St. Maarten from January 16-18. The next summit will take place in The Hague in March.

The Island and Executive Councils of Bonaire, St.Eustatius and Saba after the BES Summit last week.

“The main objective of the three-day forum was to con­tinue to forge a collective approach on administrative and political challenges facing the islands, some of which have been a direct result of the constitutional transition [in 2010 — Ed.]”, it was stated in the press release.

Presiding over the session was St. Eustatius Island Coun­cil Member Glenville Schmidt, whose one-year chairman­ship over the group will end in June. Afterwards, the posi­tion of chairperson will pass to a representative from Saba. “Participants of the summit agreed that the meetings had proven to be a platform for open debate, as well as an op­portunity to develop consensus,” it was stated in the press release. “The common purpose and aim of these island summits are to work on a joint mechanism of permanent cooperation between the islands, and to gain detailed in­sight into the different priorities present on the various islands when it comes to the changes of the WolBES and FinBES [laws].”

The three islands said it is important to identify shared concerns about the changes to these laws before they are presented to the Dutch Second Chamber for its approval. “The three islands believe that it is a truly historic occa­sion that the islands on their own accord seek to establish their own cooperation. They also acknowledge that build­ing consensus can at times appear to be an arduous task. However, collectively, they remain cognisant that this is a joint effort, and it is important to remain supportive of each other even when differing in their outlook,” it was stated in the press release.

The Daily Herald.

Opinion: An ominous cloud hangs over the educational system on Saba
Minister for Primary and Secondary Education, Mariëlle Paul, visits Saba January 31st

One comment

  1. “We need leaders not in love with money but in love with Justice; Not in love with publicity but in love with Humanity”. Said Dr. Martin Luther jr. King!
    It is astonishing that Bonaire is complaining that Saba and Statia are holding them back in legislative procedures. I think the Commissioners of the two islands should help to move things forward and not Backwards in giving timely reports to Bonaire so that transition to the new Council can move smoothly and steady!!!
    Mr. Geert Wilders and his PVV party have established in the Netherlands that they want to remove Funding for Culture in the Dutch Islands. I say this to Mr. Geert Wilders as in the words of John F. Kennedy : ‘Those who foolishly sought power by riding the back of the tiger ended up inside’!
    Martin Luther King, Jr., reminded us that “the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.” Change takes a long time, but it does happen.

    Cris Hassell

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Saba News