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Keti Koti 2023

Fotocredit: NRC

In the Netherlands, the abolition of slavery is remembered and freedom celebrated every year on 1 July. About 150 years ago, slavery ended in Suriname and the Netherlands Antilles, which were then colonies of the Netherlands. Celebrating Keti Koti is important for society because it reminds us of the past, inspires us for the future and spurs us to action in the fight against inequality and racism.


All kinds of activities are organised throughout the Netherlands, we have listed some of them:

Keti Koti, Amsterdam

The National Institute Dutch Slavery History and Legacy (NiNsee) is organising the annual National Commemoration Dutch Slavery History for the 21st time on Saturday 1 July from 14:00 to 15:15 at Oosterpark in Amsterdam. The National Commemoration is also the official start of the Remembrance Year of the Slavery Past and will be attended by a delegation of the Cabinet. This year, the Keti Koti Festival, which celebrates the abolition of slavery in Suriname and the Caribbean part of the Kingdom, will take place on the Museumplein in Amsterdam. More information via link.


Keti Koti Festival Utrecht

An afternoon of connection, performances and food at the Keti Koti Festival in Utrecht. The festival welcomes everyone on Saturday 1 July from 14:00 in the Griftpark, located in the heart of Utrecht.


Keti Koti Haarlem

The Keti Koti Haarlem Foundation and the Frans Hals Museum are joining forces to organise Keti Koti Haarlem, a dynamic event in the context of Colonial Haarlem on 1 July on location Hof in the museum, complete with music, workshops, snacks and cultural exchange. The event will take place from 15:00 to around 20:00 and is free to visit.


Filmhuis Den Haag, The Hague

In collaboration with Pepr, the Dutch streaming platform for films by black filmmakers and stories from the African diaspora, and the House of Poems, Filmhuis Den Haag presents a diverse day and evening programme full of poignant films and inspiring spoken word, from 10:45 to 22:40. Information on tickets and prices can be found here.


Keti Koti Festival, Rotterdam

The commemoration is on 30 June and the liberation festival will be celebrated on 1 July with a Keti Koti Festival. In Rotterdam, the monument commemorating slavery stands on the Lloydkade, on the spot where ships of the Rotterdam slave trading company Coopstad and Rochussen left for Africa. You can find the programme here.


Spot, Groningen

On Saturday 1 July, Groningen celebrates the abolition of slavery with Keti Koti. On that day, Groningen’s city centre turns into a large festival area. At various locations, special activities will be organised in the context of Groningen’s slavery past and its influence on the present. More information via the Spot Groningen website.


Featured: Oral History

On Friday 30 June, a Keti-Koti lecture and Commemoration with oral histories about oppression, mutilation and cultural uprooting, among other things, will take place at Nijmegen City Hall, with a lecture by Rose Mary Allen (University of Curaçao): ‘Towards a multi-voiced perspective on the Dutch slavery past, its working through and healing’.