Suriname is entering a new era after ten years of mismanagement by two Bouterse governments. Athans, the new president Chandrikapersad Santokhi said. The intentions and enthusiasm are good, it will not be the problem. But some experts have doubts whether the dream team, the 17 ministers that make up the government, also presented yesterday, is capable enough to clean up the financial mess and especially to negotiate with foreign creditors. “If that fails, there will be elections again within two years,” they warn.
Even before the new government has been able to write a single achievement on its record, Santokhi in particular was showered with congratulations: the American, Dutch, French and Chinese government leaders, among others, spoke highly. That makes sense, because in many befriended nations they breathe a sigh of relief that the disgraced Desi Bouterse has finally disappeared from the scene. Out of respect for the presidential office, they could never say that he was an obstacle to normal reciprocal relations, but of course he was.
Light and heavyweights
And now Santokhi can try to everyone’s relief. At his swearing in, he warned that it will not be easy for anyone: “From this moment on, your duties have doubled and your rights halved,” he told his audience. Above all, we have to do it together, was the red line through his story, which was received with loud applause. Optimism therefore prevailed.