October 2, 2023 -On September 29, 2023 -Alexandra van Huffelen, the State Secretary for Kingdom Relations, will pay a working visit to St. Maarten, Curaçao and Bonaire from the 30th of September to the 5th of October. The visit will be made primarily in the context of the Slavery Past Memorial Year. In St. Maarten, she will take part in a Catshuis session with representatives from all six islands, while she will visit Curaçao to attend Tula’s rehabilitation. In addition, the State Secretary will hold administrative talks about the laws regulating the administrative and financial relations between the European Netherlands and the Caribbean Netherlands, the WoIBES and FinBES.
State Secretary Van Huffelen’s working visit will start on Saturday, the 30th of September in St. Maarten with a meeting with Prime Minister Jacobs. The Catshuis session will take place on the 1st and 2nd of October, at which the State Secretary will engage in dialogue with representatives from Curaçao, Aruba, St. Maarten, Bonaire, Saba and St. Eustatius about the impact of the slavery past and the manner in which the Slavery Past Memorial Year is given substance. A special element of this meeting will be a break-out session with St. Maarten’s youth parliament.
In the evening of the 2nd of October, State Secretary Van Huffelen will travel to Curaçao. On the 3rd of October, she will hold talks with Women of Curaçao about subjects such as the reverberations of the slavery past. On the same day, she will also meet with Prime Minister Pisas and the Governor, while the evening will be entirely about the rehabilitation of Tula, who in 1795 led the great slave revolt in Curaçao.
The program in Curaçao also includes a visit to Swaen Village, a meeting with organizations supporting the LHBTQI+ community in Curaçao, a discussion with economics students at the University of Curaçao and a mini-conference with civil-society organizations.
When visiting Bonaire on the 5th of October, the State Secretary will hold administrative talks about the laws regulating the administrative and financial relations between the European Netherlands and the Caribbean Netherlands: the Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba (Public Entities) Act (WoIBES) and the Public Entities of Bonaire, St. Eustatius and Saba (Finances) Act (FinBES). In this context, she will meet with the WolBES/FinBES working group, the Executive Council and the Island Council.On Thursday, the 5th of October, State Secretary Van Huffelen will travel back to the Netherlands.