Opinion: Theomania versus Theonomics

POSTED: 04/8/14 12:55 AM

It is a well-known fact that the leader of the UP Party, the honorable Mr. Theo Heyliger, is a promoter of big businesses. He also does not get involved in any social issues. When there is a project with a construction element he is the first to jump on it, however, no remedies are presented for the social maladies in St. Maarten.

He should remember that the backbone of any country’s economy is small businesses.


  1. The honorable Mr. Theo does not promote social issues. In Parliament he is mum about items that have to do with the small man. Once there is some construction in a project he is number one.
  2. He built a bridge that contributes to the infrastructure of the country at an exorbitant price. The cost of the bridge is $51 million or 91.8 million guilders this means that each person on the island has to contribute 2,040 guilders to the bridge. (91.8 million/45,000 citizens). Since the food prices are influenced by the handling fees at the harbor we have to pay higher food prices that will affect us for the rest of our lives.
  3. The honorable Mr. Heyliger is telling people that 51 million guilders are missing from the government coffers, however, he forgot that he and former Minister of Finance Mr. Shigemoto were there prior to the NA led government. At the end of 2011, the government had some   80 million guilders in Certificates of Deposit at the banks. At the End of 2012, it was down to 48 million guilders. The Theonomics government was in power until May 2012. Now it is down to 15 million, Theonomics government is in power since June 2013. I left 34 million guilders in the coffers. It is irresponsible of his government to let the amount dip below 30 million, because that was the set threshold.
  4. The honorable Mr. Heyliger’s government closed down the internal control department, because they do not want to have any controls on the spending of the people’s money. During my tenure, I made an agreement with the Soab to establish the internal control department. However the honorable Minister Mr. Hassink cancelled it. The internal control department will improve controls on the spending of people’s money but that is not part of Theonomics.
  5. The honorable Mr. Theo’s government did not see to it that new members were appointed to the Corporate Governance Council. It seems that Parliamentarian Mr. Leroy de Weever got his wish to do away with that council. The Cft told Minister Hassink to get the Council up and running.
  6. The Government of St. Maarten got a disclaimer of an opinion from both the SOAB and the Audit Chamber for the year 2011. That entails that the financial administration of government is in such a mess that the produced numbers are unreliable. Only if a well-functioning internal control department is organized can there be improvement.
  7. The Theonomics government represented by the Honorable Mr. Hassink did not sign an intergovernmental agreement with the US government relating to the Fatca. If this signing is not done prior to June 2014, all banks on the island of St. Maarten will be unable to do business with their correspondent banks in the United States of America. None of us or the government will be able to send any money to the students in the United States of America.
  8. The Cft has told the Theonomics government that their financial management is inadequate and improvement is needed.
  9. Theonomics gives large businesses a tax break, however, there is nothing done for small businesses.
  10. Large businesses that are willing to contribute to the coffers of government are protected by Theonomics not to pay any additional fees.

The Theonomics government does not place the spending of the people’s money high on its agenda. Its motto is to spend the government funds and see what the people say.

Theonomics can cut off the flow of money to the United States of America including funds to the students.

Theonomics can continue to increase the food prices once the maintenance cost of the bridge increases due to the time factor and erosion.

Theonomics takes care of large businesses, when will the small man get a tax break?

Roland S. Tuitt, MBA, CPA

The author was Minister of Finance in the second Wescot-Williams cabinet.




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