There are many who argue that five years later there is nothing to celebrate about achieving country status on 10-10-10. A lot of them believe things haven’t improved and perhaps even gotten worse since.
Among the problems mentioned is political instability, with frequently-changing coalition governments. One of the underlying issues may be the dualistic system with a clear division between the legislative and executive branches, while in the past at least half of the commissioners actually had to be Island Council members as well.
The latter gave party leaders who are usually also the main vote-getters the chance to govern while still occupying a seat in the Island Council, without running the risk of being “left outside looking in” as already has happened twice in Parliament. Of course, the current model is the correct one in terms of the separation of powers “Trias Politica” principle, but it can present challenges especially for relatively small entities, as the so-called BES islands (Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba) also learned.
Add to that the phenomenon of “fence-jumping” whereby parliamentarians frequently “go independent” or switch allegiance and it becomes clear that the public sector has not exactly experienced the kind of steady management one ideally would want to see especially in such a young country. Then again, just because certain steps that could have a negative impact are allowed doesn’t mean people also should take these unless justified.
In fact, it is not so much the constitutional structure, but the quality of its leaders that is usually the determining factor when it comes to the wellbeing of any society. Both legislators and the administrators they appoint need to be of a level that inspires the population and a collective belief in the rule of law.
Once that confidence is eroded by dubious examples, it affects not only those directly concerned, but the community as a whole. Most of the persons involved sure know how to “talk a good game,” but often seem to forget that their actions speak louder than words.