Thursday, June 11, 2009

WPI members attend conference with Prime Minister of Netherlands Antilles

Kate and I had the opportunity yesterday to attend a keynote address by Her Excellency Emily Saïdy de Johgh-Elhage, Prime Minister of the Netherlands Antilles. The Council of Women World Leaders hosted the event at the Aspen Institute, which also featured opening remarks from Ambassador Renée Jones-Bos, Ambassador of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to the United States and Laura Liswood, the Secretary General of the Council of Women World Leaders. The event focused on the constitutional restructuring of the Netherlands Antilles, the events leading up to the proposed dissalution of the islands (which was postponed until a later date), and the political and financial future of the islands.

Both Prime Minister de Jogh-Elhage and Ambassador Jones-Bos also spoke about how they became involved in politics and the different struggles that they each face as women in the political realm. The event was both inspiring and informative and Kate and I enjoyed a delicious lunch while we learned about the beautiful islands of the Nethelands Antilles, their history, and their complex political structure within the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

Also in attendance were several Ambassadors and Embassy Representatives, including Ambassador Genda Phillip of the Embassy of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, Ambassador Raymond A. Joseph of the Embassy of Haiti, Ambassador John Beal of the Embassy of Barbados, Minister for Aruba Jocelyne Croes of the Royal Netherlands Embassy, several representatives of the Embassy of Venezuela, and many other advisors to foreign Heads-of-State.