Timing considered not right for apology for slavery past | THE DAILY HERALD

Slavery monument in Rotterdam.

THE HAGUE–The Dutch government has postponed a decision to apologise for the Netherlands’ slavery past until the end of this year because of societal unrest, political sources in The Hague have told public broadcaster NOS.

  The timing – days before the “Keti Koti” celebration marking the abolition of slavery in the Dutch colonies on July 1 – would not be appropriate given the farmers’ protests, the war in Ukraine, rising prices and the recent apology for the Dutchbat mission in Srebrenica, the sources said.

  Germany, Belgium, France, the United Kingdom and the United States have already apologised for their role in slavery, as have individual Dutch cities, such as Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Utrecht.

  The Dutch cabinet is divided on the subject, and it has yet to give an official response to last year’s report by the Advisory Board on the History of Slavery. That report said that as a legal successor to the Dutch government, it is up to the current cabinet to apologise for “directly or indirectly allowing” slavery.

  A preliminary discussion about the report in 2021 during the cabinet formation did not result in a common stance by the four negotiating parties. Conservative party VVD and Christian-Democratic Appeal (CDA) were of the opinion that people living today cannot be held responsible for the deeds of their ancestors, but centre-democrat D66 and Christian Union (CU) said those deeds were still having an effect and that an apology could lead to reconciliation.

  The postponement of the decision does not mean there will be no apology for the role the Dutch played in slavery, the sources said, but ministers first want a debate with all the parties involved.

  Next year, it will be 150 years since the end of slavery in the former Dutch colonies. D66 and CU have said the apology would have to come in the run up to 2023, or during that year, at the latest.

Source: The Daily Herald https://www.thedailyherald.sx/islands/timing-considered-not-right-for-apology-for-slavery-past


  1. Remembrances, monuments and representations have been hijacked many times by people with personal gains goals. It is easy business for the people’s cheaters called members of parliament or government, or those who wish to get so much salary. If you say you are against slavery, everybody believes it. Even if you are a minister who cheated and lied many times in his personal life, work life and political life. Color of skin or country of birth does not make wrong right.

  2. Some 500 years ago there was a Dutch preacher who said that slavery was inhumane. The government and the merchants denied this. What’s the difference?
    And now, because the world turns, it rains, the bridge was open, or inflation that makes many people angry, the “time is not right”. For criminals like Rutte, there is always an excuse not to do something.
    And they aren’t honest. In the EU meetings there is concensus among the white states that an apology could trigger discussions about slavery reparations payments. And, not that many are against it, but not during the Ukraine war.
    And so, the injustice continues.
    If you look at the many billions (more than a trillion) euros that were spend to help Ukraine, the immediate thing that occurs in my mind is: money isn’t the problem, it is the color of skin.