MARIGOT--Préfet Délégué Vincent Berton has expressed his condolences on the passing of former Mayor of Saint-Martin, Albert Fleming.
In a statement he said: “It is with respect and sincerity on behalf of the State that I pay tribute to the memory of Raoul Albert Fleming-Romney, who has left our world. As Préfet, I would like to express my most sincere condolences to his family and friends at this difficult time.
“Albert Fleming-Romney will forever remain an emblematic figure in the history of Saint-Martin, a dedicated mayor and a man of the people. His lucid vision, ability to communicate and leadership skills took the territory forward.
“In particular, he played a key role in the process that led, following a referendum in 2003, to a change in the status of the island of Saint-Martin into a Collectivité d’Outre Mer (COM) or an Overseas Collectivity, governed by Article 74, in 2007.
Berton described Fleming-Romney as “a pillar of Saint-Martin society”, a man who demonstrated empathy and attentiveness to the expectations of the population. His career as Mayor for 24 years was marked by his commitment to Saint-Martin.
“He will remain forever anchored in the memories of old and young alike. Whatever one’s opinion of him, his influence and impact on local politics are undeniable. His loss is felt by the entire population of Saint-Martin and we will remember him as a man who left an indelible mark on our territory.
“In these painful circumstances, the staff of the Préfecture of Saint-Barthélemy and Saint-Martin join me in expressing our sincere condolences to the family and loved ones of Albert Fleming-Romney. May their friendship and the support of the community provide solace.”
Former President of the Collectivité Daniel Gibbs also shared his "immense sadness” in a Facebook post. “Saint-Martin has lost one of its pillars. A great man has gone. The man who convinced me to devote my life to politics. The man who guided me and to whom I owe so much.”
Minister Delegate for Overseas France, Jean-François Carenco said he was “deeply moved to learn of the death of Albert Fleming-Romney, who was Mayor of Saint-Martin for 24 years. He was a dedicated partner in the service of his island and its inhabitants.”