The airlift -or better said the lack thereof- between Statia and its surrounding islands was a hot item in Thursday’s Island Council meeting on Statia.
During the meeting, questions were also raised about the financial support provided to Winair by The Netherlands. “I heard the transport manager say last week, that the loan agreement with Winair among other states that Winair is obligated to carry out at least two flights Statia- St. Maarten daily. I stand corrected, but as far as I know, they fly momentarily no more than 2 flights per week”, according to councilman Koos Sneek.
Sneek also noted that while he was in St. Maarten, he noticed that there were at least 10 daily flights to St. Barths. “We all know that the route to St. Barths has always been higher on Winair’s priority list than the routes to Saba and Statia. So, my question is: who is really benefitting from the loan”?
A motion presented by Sneek and Rechelline Leerdam (PLP) calls on the Statia’s Executive Council to ensure that the recommendations of the report by former KLM CEO Peter Hartman, to subsidize flights for BES-Residents would finally be put in motion. It aims to achieve a better and more airlift between Statia and its surrounding islands. The motion received broad support from 4 out of the 5 island council members. Only Clyde van Putten voted against the motion.