Decolonization Symposium in Bonaire

Bonaire is organizing its 4th symposium: “The Political Future, the Right of Self-determination and Reparation in the Caribbean IV”.

Bonaire is an island in Southern Caribbean that is lobbying the United Nations (UN) and the World to re-list Bonaire on the Non-Self Governing Territories (NSGT) List of the United Nations’ protective list.

President of We Want Bonaire Back (NGO NKBB), Mr. James Finies – a young professional Commercial Banker and past President of NGO Platform Bonaire, abandoned his professional life and turn Human Rights Activist full time where he started to lobby the Dutch Government to be transparent and accountable in its governance of the people of Bonaire for the past 18 years. Mr. Finies noted, what he calls “the new wave of European re-colonization of the Caribbean and the Americas”. Bribing and blackmailing our people.

As part of his activism, he demonstrated in the rain and sun without leaving, sleeping outside Bonaire’s Governor’s Office in 2014 – 2015 for 8 months demanding  a referendum, so that the people can choose their own future. After the dissolution of the Netherland Antilles on 10th October, 2010 (10-10-10), the people was forced to be part of Holland without equal rights.

James Finies sacrificed himself for his country and the people to get a referendum in which he succeeded. On the 18th of December 2015, the government of Bonaire had no choice but to give in and hold a Referendum in order for Mr. James to stop protesting and go Home. In that Referendum, the people of Bonaire voted overwhelmingly, a 65 percent rejecting the present illegal Constitutional Status of Bonaire. However, instead of respecting the wishes of a nation, Holland’s parliament decided to annex and embed – anchor Bonaire and its people into the Dutch Constitution with unequal rights whilst the local politicians in the Netherland Antilles and the world did nothing.

Mr. Finies says the upcoming 4 th symposium: “The Political Future, the Right of Self-determination and Reparation in the Caribbean IV” conference is expected to play a significant role in creating awareness and consciousness of our inherited and acquired decolonization-rights and our Caribbean history and the role our ancestors played over 300 years ago. Importantly, the NKBB NGO is hoping to make more awareness of the illegal colonial status the Bonaire people find themselves after 10-10-10.

According to Mr. Finies, 12 Islands around the Caribbean and the Guianas are invited, and hope more people will be aware of this conference and will attend. It will be held in Bonaire, former Netherland Antilles, downtown Kralendijk on December 6th, 7th and 8th December, 2019.

He is actively encouraging persons, Activist group, NGOs and organizations to participate from throughout the Caribbean. Invitees includes Puerto Rico, Anguilla, St. Maarten, French Guiana, Guyana, Suriname, Curacao, Barbados, San Andres and Providencia Islands, Aruba, St. Eustatius, US Virgin Islands, Grenada and Jamaica. We want to see meaningful results coming out of these conferences.

Here on Bonaire, we were never taught in schools about our colonial history and of the real history of our ancestors, but only the heroic stories of our colonizers and oppressors, Holland’s history. Till today, some of our people do not know that they were descendants of slaves, some rejected the fact. It all boils down to, that we were not taught in the class rooms about our ancestors and the sacrifice they endured for us, the activist noted.

The main objective, he says is that the conference will focus on areas of mutual benefit to the peoples of the Caribbean and the Guianas; to explore the uplifting of Bonaire and the Dutch, French and British Caribbean, Puerto Rico and Independent Caribbean Islands and by building bridges between Caribbean and Caribbean people in the Diaspora to aspire and realize our rightfully Caribbean decolonization, reparations and integration” he said.

For more info please contact Organizing Committee Chair – President, Foundation We Dare To Care: [email protected] – Phone/Whatsapp: +599 786 4576

James Finies – President, Foundation Nos Kier Boneiru Bek: [email protected] Phone/Whatsapp: +599 782 5664

Jose M Lopez Ismael

Nací en NYC. Me mudé a Puerto Rico en el 1980 donde eventualmente me convertí en independentista al ver que PR no se administra para los boricuas. Me retiré tempranamente de la pedagogía para luchar 24/7 por la descolonización de Puerto Rico a través de marchas pacíficas anuales y empujar a la ONU hacer su trabajo. Necesitaremos un tsunami de gente protestando permanentemente para obligar a USA a cumplir con la ley internacional que prohíbe el coloniaje.

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