Salida for di Oropa di Reino Uní tin konsekuensia pa nos

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Pueblo di Reino Uní a skohe pa sali for di Union Oropeo (Brexit) dos aña pasá. Nunka a indiká kon e salida aki lo tuma lugá loke a kondusí na hopi konfushon i drama polítiko. Brexit tin konsekuensia global, pero tambe pa Karibe i spesífikamente pa Sint Maarten i Kòrsou. Tin seis (6) Teritorio Ultramar Britániko (LGO) den Karibe. Un Brexit (sin negosashon) lo pone bareranan entre di e LGOnan Britániko i e LGOnan Ulandes. Den e kaso aki mester nota ku Anguilla ta dependé di Sint Maarten pa kasi tur servisio, inkluso turismo, i merkansia. Si Sint Maarten pa motibu di Brexit no por sigi hasi  negoshi ku Anguilla manera ta e kaso awor, esaki lo por tin konsekuensia ekonómiko pa Sint Maarten i tambe Kòrsou ku huntu ta forma un union monetario.

In June 2016 the United Kingdom voted to exit the EU, but failed to identify what sort of exit it wanted leading to confusion and uncertainty. This is already being felt in the Caribbean as six British Overseas Territories (BOT) brace for Brexit, especially Anguilla that’s so dependent on Sint Maarten for its services and goods. Barriers after a (no-deal) Brexit will be felt not only by Anguilla, but also Sint Maarten with which Curaçao shares a monetary union. 

The potential political implications shouldn’t be minimized either. Brexit could easily embolden the Eurosceptic movements that are plotting to use it as blueprint to exit the EU, like Austria, Denmark and The Netherlands. 

Brexit’s global impact will probably be mostly felt in the financial markets. A Brexit will push capital toward the US lowering market interest rates, making the US dollar stronger and putting pressure on an increasingly weak US economy. A strong dollar could negatively affect tourist arrivals here from Europe. No wonder Brexit and a possible US recession were high on the agenda of a recent gathering of experts in Barbados.

A large part of Anguilla’s transport, health services and food comes from Sint Maarten. Anguilla’s tourists invariable arrive via Sint Maarten. If Sint Maarten as result of Brexit is restricted from free movement of people, goods and services with BOTs, this will certainly mean a setback for the island’s economy, foreign exchange and our monetary union. These restrictions could also lead to contraband among neighbors who depend on each other.

Yet these concerns have not been flagged up enough by our policy and opinion makers. We currently have lots of pressing problems. I get it. But when we look carefully we will realize that many of today’s problems are yesterday’s issues we failed to deal with. 

Willemstad, Curaçao 

Brexit: What it could mean for us

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In June 2016 the United Kingdom voted to exit the EU, but failed to identify what sort of exit it wanted leading to confusion and uncertainty. This is already being felt in the Caribbean as six British Overseas Territories (BOT) brace for Brexit, especially Anguilla that’s so dependent on Sint Maarten for its services and goods. Barriers after a (no-deal) Brexit will be felt not only by Anguilla, but also Sint Maarten with which Curaçao shares a monetary union. 

The potential political implications shouldn’t be minimized either. Brexit could easily embolden the Eurosceptic movements that are plotting to use it as blueprint to exit the EU, like Austria, Denmark and The Netherlands. 

Brexit’s global impact will probably be mostly felt in the financial markets. A Brexit will push capital toward the US lowering market interest rates, making the US dollar stronger and putting pressure on an increasingly weak US economy. A strong dollar could negatively affect tourist arrivals here from Europe. No wonder Brexit and a possible US recession were high on the agenda of a recent gathering of experts in Barbados.

A large part of Anguilla’s transport, health services and food comes from Sint Maarten. Anguilla’s tourists invariable arrive via Sint Maarten. If Sint Maarten as result of Brexit is restricted from free movement of people, goods and services with BOTs, this will certainly mean a setback for the island’s economy, foreign exchange and our monetary union. These restrictions could also lead to contraband among neighbors who depend on each other.

Yet these concerns have not been flagged up enough by our policy and opinion makers. We currently have lots of pressing problems. I get it. But when we look carefully we will realize that many of today’s problems are yesterday’s issues we failed to deal with. 

Willemstad, Curaçao 

Bende Kòrsou i hasié kapital di Venezuela, 1877

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Presidente di Venezuela, Guzmán Blanco, na 1877 a informá  Parlamento di su pais ku su pasenshi a kaba ku Kòrsou i ku no a keda nada otro pa kumpra nos isla. E a bisa di ta dispuesto pa paga “muchu mas plaka ku Kòrsou tabata bal.” No esei so, e kier a hasi Kòrsou kapital di Venezuela i a predisí ku siendo Venezolano, Kòrsou lo bira e suidat di mas grandi, riku i limpi di Karibe.

Blanco tabatin problema ku su enemigunan polítiko tabata haña refugio aki i por a kumpra arma. Loke mas a irit’é ta ku Kòrsou no kier a ekstraditá algun di su oponentenan. Kòrsou a para ariba ku no tabatin prueba si e hendenan aki a hasi algu robes. Mester remarká ku dia Blanco tabata den oposihon i kier a bin na poder, e ora ei si Kòrsou tabata un bon amigu ku tabata bende su hendenan arma i duna nan refugio.

Promé ku Blanco lansa su idea pa kumpra  Kòrsou, Venezuela ya a kibra relashonnan diplomátiko ku Hulanda (konsekuentemente nos tambe) i tabata trata na tur manera pa boikotiá Kòrsou ekonómikamente. E kompra di nos isla den wowo di Blanco tabata pa evitá ku kontra-revolushonarionan ta usa Kòrsou pa destabilisá su pais. Na 1877 mes Blanco a keda bahá, i relashonnan a keda reestablesé. Na 1879 Blanco ta bolbe bin na poder i ta keda insistí pa kumpra Kòrsou.

Ni Kòrsou ni Hulanda a tuma Blanco i su plan na serio. E konosido Yu di Tera, Abraham Chumaceiro, tabata un di e pokonan ku a mete i a skibi un dokumento titulá “Is Curaçao te koop?”

Den un entrevista  publiká den Amigoe di Curaçao di 4 yüni 1982, Konsul General na Kòrsou, José-Angel Oropeza Ciliberto, a deklará ku nos no mester mira e “oferta” e tempu ei komo un menasa. E a bisa ku tabata mashá normal pa paisnan kolonial kumpra teritorio. Komo ehèmpel e a bisa ku Inglatera a kumpra Trinidad i Tobago, lokual nos sa ku ta un mentira flagrante. E korant briyantemente a titulá e entrevista komo “[El] Hermano bedoelt het weer goed” referiendo na e lema “Somos hermanos” ku te awe sierto hende ta kere siegamente.

Willemstad, Kòrsou

We need a local think tank

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Last month some of the brightest Caribbean and regional minds gathered in Barbados to talk about the most important issues in terms of risk confronting our region. Six big concerns were identified and discussed: 1. The no-deal Brexit; 2. A potential US recession; 3. Venezuela; 4. The new cold war in the Caribbean; 5. Climate change and 6. Derisking (the withdrawal of correspondent banking relations from Caribbean banks by US banks).

I’m not going to discuss these topics even though I’ve written extensively in the past about the Venezuelan humanitarian crisis and the new Cold War in the Caribbean involving the US, Russia, China and Taiwan. The point I want to make, or rather the question I want to pose is why we on Curaçao are not publicly discussing these matters? It baffles me that we, not only government but also NGOs, academics and the media have failed so far to create awareness about the changes and challenges our nation and region are facing.

I get it, in the beginning some of these challenges may seem negligible and remote from our lives. Politicians here are therefore more likely to postpone policy response because of the periodic cycle of elections which makes them focus on short term, day-to-day matters only. These neglegted topics could however easily end up turning into a full-blown crises.

But don’t politicians in the Caribbean and elsewhere also have to face elections periodically? That could not be the reason why rarely our Parliament discusses the future. I think it’s safe to say that politicians in general here are more involved with gossip and conversations about other people than with the shaping of our future.

We are in dire need of an independent think tank which performs research, advocacy and encourages public conversations regarding the national strategic vision, new ideas that anticipate global trends. I’m not saying that there’s no brainpower locally, but that brainpower is organised for different ends. In the civil service brainpower is engaged in mostly administrative tasks. In the private sector it’s devoted to enhancing profitability. In the university it’s devoted to academic research and teaching. We need an independent think tank to be able to tap the ideas and imagination of Yu di Kòrsou at home and abroad, as well as friends of Curaçao. Let’s stop blaming everyone  and everything we can think of  for our state of affairs. We need to challenge the status quo.

Willemstad, Curaçao

E Emperador ku tabata biba na Kòrsou den Keizershof

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Na skina Hoogstraat i De Rouvilleweg nos ta haña Keizershof, un monumento kombertí ya hopi tempu den un sentro di entretenimentu i mas resien un ‘boutique hotel’. Hopi di nos probablemente no sa ku na e adrès aki, Hoogstraat 11A un emperador (keizer) tabata biba ku su staf i ku e tabata ehersé algun funshon imperial. Di bèrdat.

Na 1844 Repúblika Dominikano (RD) despues di batayá ta haña su independensia di Haiti ku promé tabata okupá hinter e isla Hispañola. Na 1847 Fautine-Élie Soulouque (1782-1867) ta keda apuntá komo presidente di aktual Haiti. Na vários okashon e ta purba rekonkistá RD, pero sin éksito. Na 1849 e ta keda proklamá Emperador Faustin I i tres aña despues e ta keda koroná komo tal. Na 1859 militarnan ta lanta kontra di dje spesialmente despues di algun viktoria sensibel di RD riba Haiti. Emperador Faustin l ta bai den eksilo na Jamaica.

Jamaica na 1865 ta konosé un revolushon sangriente lokual ta fòrsa e emperador kue un barku di Kòrsou yamá Rigolette i ta yega nos isla ku algun siguidó riba 19 desèmber 1865. Aki e ta bai residensiá na Hoogstraat 11A kaminda pa algu mas ku un aña e ta keda ehersiendo algun funshon komo emperador di Haiti. Posiblemente na komienso di 1867 e ta regresá Haiti kaminda poko despues e ta muri. Ningun di e poseshonnan -aparentemente spektakular- di Emperador Faustin l ku a keda despues di a bandoná nos isla, a sobrebibí. Un parti interesante di nos historia a bai pèrdí i awe ta práktikamente deskonosí.

Willemstad, Kòrsou

“Pobresa ta nos destino, Dios spar nos dushi tera”

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Frater Radulphus a komponé Den Toer Nación na 1898 ku tabata keda kantá na skolnan katóliko i tambe durante selebrashonnan di Oranjehuis. Debí na su popularidat, e a bira nos himno nashonal, ounke e no a keda ankrá den lei. Originalmente e melodia di e piesa tabata basá riba un kanshon tradishonal di Oustria, pero esaki a keda kambiá na 1938. Durante di añanan e kanshon tambe tabata konosí komo Nos Tera òf Nos Tera Ta Baranca.

Normalmente himnonan nashonal ta inspirá orguyo di un pueblo, ta deskribí bunitesa i historia i ta proyektá un vishon positivo i alentador. Den Tour Nación ta papia di un isla skondí, un pueblo ku ta akseptá pobresa komo su destino i ku ta kontentu ku un Reina generoso ta goberná nos. I finalmente ta pidi pa Dios spar nos pober pueblo. No eksaktamente letranan ku ta insipirá patriotismo i un spiritu luchadó. Despues di 80 aña, na 1978, Den Toer Nación a keda remplasá. Ta interesante determiná kuantu daño na nos konfiansa propio e kanshon aki -memorisá i internalisá for di chikí na skolnan- a hasi.

E letranan original: di 1898

1. Den toer nacion nos patria/Ta poco conocir:/Den di lamar inmenso/E ta pará scondir.

2. Ma toch nos ta stiméle/Ariba toer nación,/Su gloria nos ta canta/Di hinter nos coerazon.

3. Nos tera ta barranca/I solo ta kima./Pobreza ta nos suerte/I bida ta pisá.

4. Ma doesji ta nos bida,/Trankilo i sosegá,/Gozando di fabornan/di un pueblo respetá.

5. Ni un lei di tiranía/Ta primi nos pisá/Bandera di Hoelanda/Ta kubri nos hogar.

6. Un Reina poderosa/Wilhelmina di Nassau/Coe mano generosa,/Ta goberná Corsouw.

7. Dios spaar nos doesji tera,/Nos tera di Corsouw,/Dios spaar nos fiel bandera,/Bandera rood, wit blauw.

8. Dios spaar nos soberana,/Nos mama bienstimá,/Dios spaar nos pober pueblo,/Un pueblo fortuná.

Willemstad, Kòrsou

Naf 0,10 pa kada djaka morto: kampaña limpiesa Kòrsou 1908

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Outoridatnan di Kòrsou na komienso di siglo pasá tabata man na kabes debí na kantidat grandi di sushedat, djaka i raton den nos suidat kapital. Awe esaki no mester ta un sorpresa. Sorprendente si, ta e medidanan ku gobernantenan a tuma pa remediá e situashon indeseabel i alarmante den Punda, Otrobanda i Pietermaai.

Prokuradó General a publiká na 1908 un anunsio den kua e ta pidi pueblo pasa na Fiskalia ku mas tantu djaka i raton morto posibel. Fiskalia tabata paga un depchi (10 sèn) pa kada djaka morto i 2 sèn pa kada raton morto. Pa nos haña un idea, e tempu ei 4 webu di galiña tabata kosta un depchi.

E kampaña tabata un éksito rotundo i a haña publisidat den hinter Reino. Sifranan ta mustra ku durante di e promé siman a entregá 219 djaka i 944 raton. En total e kampaña aki a kosta 20,000 florin i a produsí algun shen mil djaka i raton. Tambe a eliminá lugánan di benta sushi ilegal den nos suidat kapital. Punda a resultá di ta e parti mas sushi. Finalmente tabata huma sierto barkunan di bela, prinsipalmente esnan ku tabata trafiká pa Venezuela, lokual a mata kantidat grandi di djaka i raton.  

Willemstad, Kòrsou

Archivo Nashonal; Curaçao van Kolonie tot Autonomie, Dr. Joh. den Hertog; Suriname, Koloniaal Nieuws- en Advertentieblad, 14.7.1908