Aruba collaborates with Caribbean Court

Aruba collaborated with the consensus statutory law for a joint court of justice for the Caribbean part of the Kingdom. Justice-minister Rudy Croes emphasizes that this is under the condition that there will be one judicial organization for the entire Kingdom on the long run. State secretary of Kingdom Relations, Ank Bijleveld-Schouten indicated yesterday that in a few weeks, there will be an accord on the assets of Plant NV.

As the Dutch minister of Justice Ernst Hirsch Ballin put is yesterday during a press conference, as fully pledged partner, Aruba takes part again in the official project group on the organization of the judiciary and legal system after the disintegration of the Antilles.
Since the conflict on the assets of the Plant-hotel, Aruba was no longer active in the negotiations. That has changed now that the Netherlands and especially Hirsch Ballin expressed themselves positive about Aruba’s idea to come to a legal organization for the Kingdom.
In the list of decisions of the tripartite judicial deliberation that took place yesterday that was also signed by Bijleveld, is stated that a kingdom commission will be established to study the Aruban idea further.
Bijleveld anticipates that now that Aruba decided to cooperate, the consensus statutory law for the establishment of a Caribbean Court would be ready before December 15. This way we accomplish one of the settlement to be ready with the laws concerning the political structure before this date, said Bijleveld satisfied.
They agreed that in view of the possible introduction of a kingdom-wide regulation for the sitting magistrate, the statutory law will be evaluated after five years. The kingdom committee is also going to study a ‘related’ regulation for the standing magistrature, the Public Prosecutor, as well as the legal position of the members of the OM and the Joint Court of Justice. Croes didn’t want to say whether also the salaries of the members would be connected to the same circuit.
Bijleveld also mentioned that there will be solution for the Plant-conflict within a few weeks. She didn’t want to go into details. She just said that she had a good conversation with Premier Nelson Oduber on this.
(Source: Amigoe)

June 24, 2008

 

 

 

The Netherlands: One judiciary is unthinkable

The position of the Netherlands and the Neth.Antilles is still that after the Antilles break up, there ought to come on Joint Court of Justice for the Caribbean part of the Kingdom.
“The position of the Political Steering Committee Political Changes Neth.Antilles on the organization of the judiciary is still the same”, says Thijs Manter, spokesperson of secretary of state Ank Bijleveld-Schouten (CDA) of Kingdom Relations. His reaction is on the statements of Justice-minister Rudy Croes in last Saturday’s edition of this paper, that Aruba has reached an agreement with the Netherlands and the Neth.Antilles on a consensus statutory law for the organization of one judicial organization for all the three countries within the Kingdom. Croes suggested that now that the three countries are more or less in agreement, we can put a stop to the Political Steering Committee.
Acting procurator general (PG) Nico Jörg calls the article in the Amigoe a false report. “It is unthinkable that the Netherlands would want this. That means that Aruba and the other islands must get a seat in the Council for the Administration of Justice. The Netherlands will never do this; they are not going to give the municipalities Alkmaar and Leeuwarden a say in the committee, right?”
The Council for the Administration of Justice forms the link between the minister of Justice and Dutch courts. The Council looks after the external common interest of the courts, takes care of provisions that go beyond the court, supervises the operational- and financial management, and if necessary, gives general operational management instructions. The Council is at the same time the focal point for and the spokesperson of the administration of justice in political and social debate.
According to Jörg, there is going to be a Caribbean Court, ‘as was considered in the bosom of the current Joint Court. Unless Aruba is planning to break away, but I don’t think that that will happen, because the island will then get isolated.” Aruba can also go for a Court of her own, but “most of the people that have invested their money here, will leave”, said Jörg.
“It is ultimately the High Court that currently sees to a reliable administration of justice. You must not even think about the fact that there is just going to be an Aruba judiciary.” Aruba needs a very strong judicial power to prevent investors from leaving, also to “put an iron hand against the government.”
The ministry of Justice in the Netherlands doesn’t want to confirm nor deny an agreement on a consensus law for the judicial power. It is also not clear whether Minister Ernst Hirsch Ballin (CDA) has indeed contacted or will contact the Council for the Administration of Justice, like Minister Croes indicated. Spokesperson Wiebe Alkema only said that the subject is on the agenda of the next tripartite Justice deliberation that takes place in Aruba at the end of this month (21 till 24 of June inclusive, red). State Secretary Bijleveld-Schouten will also be present, said her spokesperson.(Source: Amigoe)

June 5, 2008

Opposition pleased with new structure judiciary

AVP-leader Eman in conversation with Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende; political advisor of AVP, Mito Croes was also present then in June of 2007.

Opposition party AVP is pleased that the judiciary stays within the kingdom’s ordainment, says party-leader Mike Eman as a result of the news that it is almost certain that an agreement is reached about one organization for the judiciary within the Kingdom. Eman calls this ‘particularly important for safeguarding the independency of the administration of justice in Aruba’.
“We were very concerned about the fact that the government of Aruba was constantly sabotaging a decision to come to an independent joint Court, referring to the unsolved discussion about the monies of Plant NV, and also about the ideas of Justice-minister Rudy Croes to have an own court of justice for Aruba”, said Eman, who says that he cannot understand that the Oduber-government connects such fundamental matters like administration of justice to a discussion on the sales proceeds of a hotel.
AVP had already argued for a lasting imbedding of the administration of justice, the Public Prosecutor (OM), the Advisory Council, the General Audit Office, and the Central Bank in kingdom relations. “The impartiality, independency, and professionalism of these institutions must also be safeguarded. We have chosen to stay within the Kingdom and so guarantee the realization of the fundamental human rights and freedoms. With that he refers to matters like legal security and good quality government.
COOPERATION
AVP is in favour of laying down the cooperation of institutions like the OM, Advisory Council, General Audit Office, and the Central Bank in a Statutory Law.
As controller of the executive branch and advisory body of the executive branch and the legislative power, the Advisory Council, General Audit Office, and the Central Bank must deliver an important contribution to guarantee the quality and integrity of the government. In order to do this, the guaranteeing of the independency and objectivity is crucial. We are therefore in favour of creating a formal personnel cooperation relation to increase the independency, the professionalism, and the authority of these institutions in Aruba. “The same form of formal cooperation is also necessary between the Central Bank of Aruba and the Bank of the Netherlands.”
(Source: Amigoe)

June 3, 2008

One judicial organization Aruba, Antilles, and the Netherlands

The Administration of Justice Council in The Hague will probably have an important role in the new judicial organization for the Kingdom.

It is almost certain that there will be one organization for the judiciary within the Kingdom, says Justice-minister Rudy Croes yesterday after he had reached an agreement with his Antillean and Dutch colleagues on a consensus statutory law in which rules are laid down for the judiciary.  The Administration of Justice Council will be allotted an important role in this.  
The minister calls the agreement a breakthrough.  The negotiations between the three countries about the organization of the judiciary and the legal system have been going extremely difficult for quite some time already.   Due to the conflict with the Netherlands about the assets of Plant NV, Aruba never wanted to be actively involved in the project group administration of justice, legal formation, and constitutional affairs.  The negotiations on the future organization of the system of justice are prepared in this official working group.
Aruba was also not satisfied with the organization of the conversations, in which especially the Netherlands (read: state secretary Ank Bijleveld of Kingdom Relations) aimed for coming to a Caribbean Court, also regulated in a statutory law.  Aruba indicated in November that she is still against that and prefers to adjust the existing Cooperation-regulation, in which the Joint Court is regulated.
The current big turnaround is according to Croes, because they are now ‘equally’ tagging along with each other.  “No separate treatment is imposed for the Caribbean, but an organization on equal level for the judiciary within the entire Kingdom, thus also for the Netherlands.  This is the only way to come to a good judicial organization.” 
Besides, Aruba’s plan is not new.  The government has already presented it earlier in a letter to the Dutch and Antillean governments.  Prime Minister Nelson Oduber has again sent a letter with the proposal in January of this year.  This time her sent it to the government for the Kingdom and separately to each of the governing bodies in the Neth.Antilles, but there was no reaction again.  Minister Croes has then contacted the ministers of Justice Ernst Hirsch Ballin (the Netherlands) and David Dick (Antilles).  Meanwhile, some members of the Supreme Court and the Administration of Justice Council in the Netherlands have already reacted positive on the plan.  Minister Hirsch Ballin told minister Croes that he will get in contact with the Administration of Justice Council.
ADVISORY BOARD
The Kingdom’s broad organization for the judiciary will be laid down in a so-called consensus law, based on article 38 of the Charter for the Kingdom of the Netherlands, which states that the three countries can mutually make arrangements, among others laid down per statutory law.  Croes indicated that this construction will possibly be also used to come to one procedural law for the civil rights, criminal justice, as well as administrative law and same for the General Administrative Law. 
Besides, our country would like it very much that the concordance principles for the most important law books, like the Criminal Code and the Code of Criminal Procedure are laid down in the statutory law.
Croes says that a new Kingdom working group is going to be set up to give new meaning to the new statutory laws.  According to the minister, they must also start going into a better cooperation within the Kingdom with the implementation of international treaties.  Until now, it is the Netherlands that signs the treaties and then leaves it up to the islands to implement these in the local legislation, said Croes. 
NEW INTERIM PG
After the news got out that the temporary appointment of Dato Steenhuis, former PG in the Netherlands, was dropped, Aruba and the Netherlands have reached an agreement again on a new interim procurator general (PG).  Minister Croes doesn’t want to say more on this matter, other than ‘it’s going to be an Aruba citizen’ that will be appointed for the period of six months.  The interim-PG replaces Theresa Croes Fernandes.  Attorney General Nico Jörg, who leaves for the Supreme Court in the Netherlands per July 1, has been doing her job since last year.
(Source: Amigoe)

June 2, 2008

 

 

Marinier krijgt drie maanden voor veroorzaken auto-ongeluk

PHILIPSBURG/ARNHEM – Meer dan een jaar na dato krijgt Patricia Lynch naar eigen zeggen eindelijk erkenning: de Nederlandse marinier die haar in de nacht van 4 mei 2019 meesleepte in een auto-ongeluk op Sint-Maarten, krijgt drie maanden militaire detentie.

Kabinet verlengt steunpakket voor Caribisch Nederland

DEN HAAG - Het kabinet heeft besloten om het steun- en herstelpakket voor inwoners en bedrijven op Bonaire, Sint-Eustatius en Saba, vanwege het coronavirus, met nog eens negen maanden te verlengen tot 12 juli 2021.

CFT warns St. Maarten that loan is illegal

THE HAGUE--The Committee for Financial Supervision (CFT) on Monday admonished St. Maarten Finance Minister Ardwell Irion for issuing a loan on the local capital market without prior permission.