Minister Arrindell Receives Newly Published Book: ‘From Slavery to Freedom’ | SOUALIGA NEWSDAY

THE NETHERLANDS (THE HAGUE) – Deputy Minister Plenipotentiary Drs. Gracita R. Arrindell marked the end of the Slavery Memorial Year the day after the official Emancipation Day celebrations on July 1st by receiving the newly published book "From Slavery to Freedom" in her office in The Hague.

Drs. Arrindell represented Sint Maarten at the National ceremony in Amsterdam that was attended by King Willem-Alexander and nine ministers of the then caretaker Dutch cabinet on their last day in office.

The following day Minister Arrindell was presented with the book, the first ever collection of stories and poetry on the subject by authors from both sides of the Atlantic, including Surinam.

The book is an initiative of Loeki Morales' Beyond Futura Events Foundation, who is one of the contributors with a story about two enslaved young men running to their freedom on Sint Maarten.

The publication was presented to Minister Drs. Arrindell by Walter Hellebrand from St. Eustatius whose story about the Statia Slave Revolt of 1848 is also featured in the book. Currently, the book is only available in Dutch under the title 'Van Slavernij naar Vrijheid,’ but an English edition is being planned.

Deputy Minister Plenipotentiary Arrindell remarked: "We appreciate this gesture from Hellebrand. It is important to have our bookshelves well stocked with literature that illustrates our shared history."

Minister Drs. Arrindell, who was the first President of the Parliament of Sint Maarten, was appointed Deputy Minister Plenipotentiary by the Mercelina cabinet in May 2024, with Patrice Gumbs as Minister Plenipotentiary.

Since Gumbs was called back to Sint Maarten to take the post of Minister of Public Housing, Spatial Planning, Environment and Infrastructure (VROMI) as of June 25, Drs. Arrindell has to now fulfill the vacant role as well as her own. Commenting on this, she said: "It is quite a task, but I am humbled by the trust I am given and intend to deliver the max to the people of Sint Maarten."