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Learn How to Take Care of Your Financial Health & Build Wealth

SINT MAARTEN (GREAT BAY) - January is generally the month in which many people find themselves with “more month at the end of the money” than any other month. Many have overspent for the Christmas holidays and are left wondering where their next dollar will come from and sometimes find themselves in desperate situations.

Cognizant of this fact, Victorious Living Foundation (VLF), which officially celebrates 20 years this June of empowering, enlightening, reconciling and transforming lives, has resumed its monthly Health & Wellness Education Series which was launched in March 2021. Usually, VLF’s wellness series focuses on nutrition, physical wellness or mental health; however VLF’s visionary, Dr. Erna Mae Francis Cotton indicated that in resuming the series she felt it important to help position all of us to win in 2022, by helping us to focus on our financial health.

This complimentary Master class will be held on January 22nd from 7-8:45 p.m. via Zoom. Participants locally and around the world may register for this complimentary event at to learn from Dawne Williams, MBA, Founder and CEO - DEW Consultancy. Williams, M.B.A., a Financial Services and Service Excellence Professional, is an Independent Consultant in Banking, Financial Services, Management and Service Excellence.

She obtained her professional education from the United Kingdom Chartered Institute of Bankers, University of Manchester Institute of Science and Technology, Wharton Business School of the University of Pennsylvania and University of Wales. Her career in the Financial Services Industry spans 44 years, 25 of which were spent practicing throughout the English-speaking Caribbean.

Dawne Williams is recognized for outstanding and valuable contribution in Economics and Finance in St. Kitts & Nevis; she is the former CEO of the St. Kitts Nevis Anguilla National Bank & CIBC First Caribbean Executive. Williams is the Past President of the Business and Professional Women’s Club of St Kitts and the current Regional Coordinator for the Business and Professional Women’s Clubs of North America and The Caribbean. A friend and an advisor to Victorious Living, she’ll help us to be able to define Financial Management; understand our role in managing our finances; provide tips to successfully manage our finances and create wealth.

Sabina Asadova, CEO of Global Health 2 Wealth Solutions, is a regular contributor and partner of Victorious Living Health & Wellness Education series. Sabina was elected as Head of Israel’s Agency for International Development Cooperation (MASHAV) and President of “Shalom Club” Mashav in Azerbaijan. She will share how to be healthy, support those who need to improve their health while creating wealth through multiple streams of income.

Join Victorious Living’s Master class hosts, Roy Cotton, Jr. and Dr. Erna Mae Francis Cotton and guests on Saturday January 22nd. Register for this complimentary Master class at or call 1-721-524-8731.


Gordon-Carty: Civil servant exodus due to victimization, hopelessness

SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) - Leader of the United St. Maarten Party (USP) Pamela Gordon-Carty on Wednesday decried the number of civil servants that are leaving government service and placed the blame squarely on the shoulders of the National Alliance/UP coalition government. She said the government has created an atmosphere of hopelessness and victimization which is directly contributing to the exodus of public servants.

“While I want to wish the entire population of country St. Maarten a prosperous and health filled new year beginnings, I would also want to express my dissatisfaction with what has been going on in plain sight right here. Lately there's a trend of putting down our own people publicly to the point of humiliating them, ruining their career whether it be political or not,” Gordon-Carty said, adding that public servants are being made a mockery to suit whatever narrative or hidden agendas.

“We are also aware of more planning to follow suit. Who will be the new ones? What's the selection procedure? Are our locals going to have a fair chance? Government is portraying to be for the people but their actions speak to the contrary. The constant selective dismissals, the resignations and victimization of our local people have to stop,” she said.

Gordon-Carty said even in those instances where the court was involved with terminating of civil servants, there could easily have been other individuals that could and maybe should have been held accountable because of improper behavior and undermining of senior civil servants.

“I do not know of any other country that treats its own people with such mockery. It is a disgrace. Individuals that have been in contact with the law and were also convicted are also quick to condemn others as if they never made a mistake in their life time. People we as a nation need to unite. I am not saying we need to condone wrong doings, but we can't be enjoy stepping on our own and let others that have done worse to walk away ‘scotch’ free,” she said.

She continued: “What is the message we are giving out to our younger generation. No one on this earth is perfect so let's stop the facade. Give the nation a chance to prove to the outer world that we stand together as a nation by our actions. This selective choice of making our own people into public spectacles is not acceptable. For me it doesn't matter what political color the individual represents.

“Stop undermining our own. Why are we constantly stepping over our own? To prove a point to who is my question? Who do we want to please? So what are we saying that educated young individuals can't come back home and occupy a decent post in his or her country? Are we saying that if this individual doesn't role with what a selective group wants, then we will slander him/her, beat the individual to a pulp, ridicule him publicly and stand on the side and be part of how they’re bringing down our own? St. Maarten remember together we are stronger divided it's not going to work out,” she concluded.


Successful implementation first stage Instant Payments

SINT MAARTEN/CURACAO - The Centrale Bank van Curaçao en Sint Maarten (CBCS) can look back on a successful implementation of the first stage of the Instant Payments Clearing and Settlement Mechanism (IP-CSM).

All interbank payments in and between Curaçao and Sint Maarten as well as interbank payments between banks in Bonaire will now be processed within a few seconds, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

As per January 15, 2022, the following financial institutions participate in the system: Orco Bank NV (Curaçao, Sint Maarten & Bonaire) PSB Bank NV (Curaçao) Maduro & Curiel’s Bank NV (Curaçao & Bonaire) Windward Island Bank NV (Sint Maarten) Banco di Caribe N.V. (Curaçao, Sint Maarten & Bonaire) RBC Royal Bank N.V. (Curaçao, Sint Maarten & Bonaire)

CBCS now aims to get the other commercial banks connected to the IP-CSM as soon as possible during this year.

Furthermore, the CBCS, in collaboration with the local banks, will further develop the IP-CSM as to process transactions between Bonaire and Curaçao/Sint Maarten within seconds per June 2022, and will expand the payment options on all islands to more efficient mobile and online P2P (person-to-person), P2B (person-to-business), P2G (person-to-government) and in-store payments as of 2023.


Extended pre-trial detention for Basseterre Drive shooting suspect

SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) - The suspect in the Boxing Day shooting has had his pre-trial detention extended by sixty days on today, Monday, January 17, by the instructing judge. E. C-C. is suspected of shooting his partner in Basseterre Drive, Middle Region, on the afternoon of December 26, 2021. He fled the scene of the shooting but was apprehended by police in the vicinity of the Bell’s Lookout Point (commonly called “Harold Jack”) on Cole Bay Hill on the evening of December 27.

The suspect is expected to appear in the Court of First Instance for his pro forma hearing on February 23. A pro forma hearing deals with, among other things, the necessity of continuing the pre-trial detention based on the status of the investigation.


Several Traffic Accidents involving Scooters

SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) - Over the past week, KPSM’s Traffic Department has yet again handled a number of accidents resulting in injuries, the police said in a media statement on Sunday.

KPSM will be continue to carry out the controls on scooter riders and motorcyclists, especially due to some road users not respecting or obeying traffic regulations. Their behavior is a nuisance to the community and endangers the lives of others.

According to an international study, several factors influence the cause of scooters and motorcycles involvement in accidents. These include:

  • Speed-related errors
  • Stunts
  • None or inappropriate protective equipment
  • Traffic violations

Anyone with information about any dangerous rider or others plaguing the community, contact the Police Force: 54-22222 or emergency number 911. (KPSM)

police red scooter

police yellow bike

police blue scooter

Images below of the various scooters that were involved in several accidents that took place over the past week.

traffic tips for scooter riders






Airport Control Tower Operations impacted due to limited staff

SINT MAARTEN (SIMPSON BAY-AIRPORT) – The Princess Juliana International Airport (SXM) announced on Saturday that the Air Traffic Services (ATS) – control tower – would close Saturday evening at 9.00pm due to limited staff, and in order to ensure safety, the decision was taken to close the control tower.

The airport added in its press statement, “If and when there are any changes, Airport’s Corporate Communications will update all stakeholders and the general public accordingly. We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused.”


WYCCF to organize Alzheimer's Support Group meeting this Saturday

SINT MAARTEN (ST. JOHN’S ESTATE) - On Saturday, January 15th, 2022, from 5-6 PM, the White & Yellow Cross Care Foundation (WYCCF) is organizing the first meeting of its Alzheimer's Support Group at the St. Martin's Home in St. John's. This meeting is specifically organized to support those who are currently providing care, have provided care, or are going to provide care to someone with Alzheimer's disease or dementia. The WYCCF invites everyone in this situation to share, listen and learn through shared experiences. There will be very strict preventative Covid measures to ensure safety. Everyone will get the opportunity to share their experiences if they wish to do so or ask any question, they might have to our healthcare professionals. 

Alzheimer's is a challenging disease to cope with. To slowly lose one's abilities, which may result in losing the independence one had their whole adult life, can be difficult to accept. One gradually becomes more and more dependent on the care of others. In most cases, the family members take on the care. However, what may begin with light help, can become a full-time job. This gradually increasing workload often proves very hard for family members to keep up with. The caregiver might still have a job, and other responsibilities and, on top of that, may not be trained to provide this type and amount of care. 

Besides the practical aspects, caring for a loved one diagnosed with Alzheimer's can be difficult emotionally. Someone's personality can change; they can become angry or frustrated without apparent reason, or they no longer trust the persons that were always the closest to them. To see a loved one slowly but steadily changing like this, seemingly without anything you can do about it, can be a heavy burden to carry. 

Many persons in this situation greatly benefit from some form of support. This can be asking a question to an expert, learning from others going through the same situation, or simply getting some things off your chest. It's important to realize that you are not alone and don't have to go through this alone. For persons who have gone through this experience in the past, it can help to talk about it. On the other hand, it can be of great value for those at the start of this journey to hear what they can expect and how others cope with specific situations. There will also be an expert present, which you can ask any question that you might have.

For this reason, the White & Yellow Cross Care Foundation starts with the Alzheimer support group meetings, of which the first one will be this weekend from 5 to 6 PM in the St. Martin's Home at St. John's Estate Road #6, Cul-de-Sac. Masks and social distancing will be required to ensure a safe environment. In this first meeting, the main aim will be to get to know each other and establish agreements to create an open and safe environment to share our experiences. 

The WYCCF stands for quality care, and this meeting is an excellent example of what we mean by that. We're not only looking out for the immediate needs of the client. But we also look at how we can improve the client's environment and the people around them. Because the care for a person with Alzheimer's or dementia doesn't stop when they leave the WYCCF at the end of the day, it is essential to support the people around them. To take on this type of care can be a heavy responsibility, and it can become hard to provide care if they're not doing well themselves. Therefore, supporting these persons is an essential part of delivering quality care.


Nightlife business hours to scale back to 11:00 pm as of Wednesday night

SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) - The Minister of Public Health, Social Development and Labor, Omar Ottley informs the public, that in accordance with his COVID-19 phased approach for the night life; business hours will be scaled back to 11:00 pm.

The phased approach is based on the hospital's occupancy rate and capacity, to avoid a possible collapse of our health care system, while maintaining a balance in our economic activity on the island.

For clarity, the Ministerial Regulation goes into effect on Wednesday January 12th, with the understanding that all nightlife establishments must be closed by 11:00 pm.

Phase 1:

4 - 7 hospitalizations (20%), scale back to 1:00 am. If hospitalization should later decrease to less than 4, for a period of two weeks, then the time would be reverted.

Phase 2:

8 or more hospitalizations (40%), scale back to 11:00 pm. If hospitalizations should decrease to less than 8, for a period of two weeks, then the time would be adjusted accordingly.


Prime Minister Jacobs seeks meeting with new Dutch State Secretary for Kingdom Relations Van Huffelen

SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) – The Prime Minister of Sint Maarten Hon. Silveria Jacobs is seeking a virtual meeting with the new Dutch State Secretary for Kingdom Relations and Digitalizing Alexandra van Huffelen once she has been sworn in.

The new Dutch Government coalition comprises of the following political parties, VVD, D66, CDA and the ChristenUnie. The new cabinet of the Dutch Government, the fourth to be led by Prime Minister and Minister of General Affairs Mark Rutte will be sworn in on Monday, January 10.

“The winds of change have blown in, and Sint Maarten is looking forward to equitable, transparent and open communications with the Netherlands in 2022 that will lead to better opportunities for the people of this country. In 2021 we have been in the trenches and have seen the ups and downs where our relations are concerned within the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

“The dialogue will continue, and we will work towards improving our relationship even more in 2022. In 2021 we built some bridges and look forward to building them further as we learn to cope along with the rest of the world with this global pandemic. I would like to once again congratulate the Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte and his cabinet as he prepares to lead his fourth administration on Monday, January 10,” Prime Minister Hon. Silveria Jacobs said on Thursday.

Some of the points that Prime Minister Jacobs would like to address with the new Dutch State Secretary for Kingdom Relations and Digitalizing Alexandra van Huffelen via a virtual meeting are the three decision points that have cause for concern for Sint Maarten and were postponed until the upcoming Kingdom Council of Ministers meeting scheduled for January 21.

“The new Dutch Government in equitable collaboration with Sint Maarten and the other countries will have many issues to address and finalize including agenda points that were postponed in December. This will be the first Kingdom Council of Ministers meeting for 2022, and we look forward to favourable decisions being made that would allow Sint Maarten to continue on the track of moving forward, by effectuating the budget 2022 still to be debated in Parliament from which the in country package will be executed. We expect the measures together with other initiatives will make the country more resilient.

“As a country, sufficient room is needed considering the current pandemic and economic challenges we are facing in order for us to move forward. We are eager to get discussions going again as time is of an essence. Sint Maarten has requested the approval of the deviation for the budgetary norms of article 15 of the Rijkswet Financieel Toezicht (Rft).

“The Committee for Financial Supervision (Cft), has also advised positively on the necessary deviation of article 15 (Rft) which allows for a budget deficit. Sint Maarten requested for article 25 (Rft) to be applied, allowing the country in times of a disaster the right to deviate from Article 15 (Rft) which establishes the budgetary norms. This legally empowers Sint Maarten to enact the law for an approved budget deficit and will in the end allow for the financing of the reforms in the Country Packages.

“The current global pandemic can be classified as a disaster for the country, and we have been operating in this manner for almost two years. We look forward to resolving this matter in the next Kingdom Council of Ministers,” Prime Minister Hon. Silveria Jacopbs said on Thursday.

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