Inauguration program for early birds in the islandsPOSTED: 04/26/13 12:27 PM
St. Maarten – Royalty lovers in the Caribbean will have to get up early on Tuesday if they want to witness the abdication of H.M. Queen Beatrix in the Moses Hall of the Royal Palace in Amsterdam. The historic event is scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. – a moment when most people on the islands are still happily sleeping because our clocks read 4 a.m.
In the presence of members of the First and Second Chamber, the Kingdom Council of Ministers (including our Minister Plenipotentiary Mathias Voges) and members of the Royal family. Queen Beatrix will sign the Deed of Abdication that will be read by the director of the queen’s cabinet, Chris Breedveld.
This ceremony is scheduled to last no more than half an hour. Immediately afterwards, King Willem-Alexander, Queen Máxima and by then Her Royal Highness Princess Beatrix will appear on the palace’s balcony, where Beatrix and the king will give a brief speech. The eldest daughter of the new king and queen, Catherina-Amalia becomes the princess of Orange on Tuesday. She is the first in line to succeed her father to the throne. She will also appear on the balcony, together with her sisters, Princesses Alexia and Ariane.
While Willem-Alexander becomes de facto king at the moment his mother abdicates, his inauguration still has to take place. This ceremony will take place in the Nieuwe Kerk in Amsterdam in the afternoon, at a time many islanders are wide awake: 2 p.m. in the Netherlands, 8 a.m. in St. Maarten.
The inauguration ceremony is scheduled to take one and a half hour. King Willem-Alexander will be sworn in and inaugurated during a joint meeting of the States-General. The King will take the oath and address the meeting, followed by an address by the chairman of the joint meeting, Fred de Graaf.
He will pronounce the inauguration declaration. Afterwards, Members of both Chambers of Parliament and delegates from the parliaments of St. Maarten, Aruba and Curacao will take the oath or the promise, expression their loyalty to King Willem-Alexander.
By 3.30 p.m. (9.30 island time) the ceremony is over and followed by a reception for authorities and Members of the States-General at the Royal Palace in Amsterdam.