Swearing-in of King Philippe before both chambers of the Belgian federal parliament

Palace of the Nation, 12 noon

Sequence of events

11.30 a.m.: The parliamentary session is opened

  • The 150 representatives and 71 senators are called to meet in a joint session, in the hemicycle of the Chamber of Representatives.
  • The Presidents of the Chamber of Representatives and the Senate read the deed of abdication.
  • The Presidents of the Chamber of Representatives and the Senate welcome the Kings, the Queens and the Royal Family in the peristyle of the Federal Parliament.
  • King Albert II, the Royal Family and Queen Mathilde go up the grand staircase of the Senate to the Tapestry Room next to the hemicycle of the Chamber of Representatives, as per tradition.
  • King Philippe goes up the grand staircase of the Chamber of Representatives to the Conference Room next to the hemicycle of the Chamber of Representatives.

12 noon: The King enters the hemicycle and takes the constitutional oath

  • King Albert, the Royal Family, and then Queen Mathilde enter the hemicycle of the Chamber of Representatives.
  • A Senate usher announces "le Roi – de Koning – der König" (the King).
  • King Philippe enters the hemicycle and sits on the throne.
  • The President of the Chamber of Representatives makes a short speech in Belgium's three national languages and invites King Philippe to take the constitutional oath.
  • King Philippe takes the constitutional oath in Belgium's three national languages.
  • King Philippe makes a speech.
  • The President of the Senate rises, makes a short speech in Belgium's three official languages and congratulates the King on behalf of the federal parliament.
  • The Royal Band of the Belgian Naval Component performs the Belgian national anthem and the European anthem.

12.30 p.m.: The King leaves and the parliamentary session is closed

  • King Philippe leaves the hemicycle with the President of the Chamber of Representatives while the President of the Senate closes the parliamentary session.
  • The President joins the President of the Chamber and the King and together they walk down the Grand Staircase.
  • King Albert II, the Royal Family and Queen Mathilde leave the hemicycle of the Chamber of Representatives through the Senate Tapestry Room and go down the grand staircase of the Senate to the peristyle.
  • King Philippe and Queen Mathilde sign the guestbooks of the Chamber of Representatives and the Senate.
  • The King, the Queen and the Royal Family greet the deputations that welcomed them.
  • The two Presidents accompany them to the steps at Place de la Nation, where they take their leave.
  • The commanding officer of the Belgian Royal Escort introduces himself. The King greets the riders of the escort and the band plays in front of the gates of the Palace of the Nation.
  • 101 canon shots are fired at 12.45 p.m. from the Parc du Cinquantenaire.

12.45 p.m.  The royal car leaves, followed by the other cars carrying the Royal Family.

 

Text of the Constitutional Oath

"Je jure d'observer la Constitution et les lois du peuple belge, de maintenir l'indépendance nationale et l'intégrité du territoire." (constitution art.91)
"Ik zweer dat ik de Grondwet en de wetten van het Belgische volk zal naleven, 's Lands onafhankelijkheid handhaven en het grondgebied ongeschonden bewaren." 
"Ich schwöre, die Verfassung und die Gesetze des belgischen Volkes zu beachten, die Unabhängigkeit des Landes zu erhalten und die Unversehrtheit des Staatsgebietes zu wahren."
(I swear that I will observe the constitution and laws of the Belgian people, preserve the country's independence and guarantee its territorial integrity, article 91 of the Belgian constitution.)

 

Guests at the swearing-in ceremony (non-exhaustive list)

  • King Albert, the Queens, the Royal Family and Queen Mathilde's family
  • The members of the Chamber of Representatives and the Senate
  • The presidents and vice-presidents of the parliaments of the Communities and the Regions
  • The President of the European Commission
  • The members of the federal government
  • The members of the governments of the Communities and the Regions
  • The Belgian members of the European Parliament
  • The honorary presidents of the Chamber of Representatives and the Senate
  • The ministers of state
  • The heads of the political parties
  • The governors of the provinces and the chairmen of the provincial councils
  • High-ranking administrative officials
  • Representatives of the recognised religions
  • Senior ambassadors, representatives of the European diplomatic caucuses and the ambassadors of the countries sharing the rotating presidency of the EU
  • The social partners of the Group of 10 (known as the 'single status' group)
  • The chairmen of the Federal Public Services
  • Representatives of the intelligence services
  • The federal ombudsmen
  • Representatives of the armed forces and the police
  • The Mayor of Brussels
  • The parliamentary clerks