Omar Ottley.

PHILIPSBURG--Civil Engineer Omar Ottley announced on Monday that he will be contesting the upcoming parliamentary elections with the United People (UP) party. He will run in the #3 position on the list.

Ottley was born in Queens, New York, in 1986. One month later, he was brought back to St. Maarten, where he later attended the Methodist Agogic Centre and St. Maarten Academy.

The eldest of three boys for his parents, he later moved to the US where he spent three years at Lithonia High School in Atlanta, Georgia, before attending Martin Luther King Jr. High School, where he graduated in 2004. That same year he entered Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU) in Tallahassee, Florida, and studied for a Bachelor of Science degree, which he obtained in 2009. In October 2010, Ottley entered Strayer University in Georgia, where he earned a master’s degree with honours in 2013. He has worked for MNO and WWR in the past and currently runs his own business O & Eric Construction Company. His motivation for starting his own company was mainly to provide opportunities for locals.

When he started in the business, he noticed that there were mainly Dutch construction companies, with one specific company capitalizing on the labour for projects and subcontracting the jobs. This gave him the inspiration to begin his own company and hire local workers.

Ottley plans to focus on residents and the myriad of issues in neglected areas. To him, a country is only as good as its people, it was stated in a press release.