Opposition member criticizes Aristide for inciting race, class hatred

Professor Sauveur Pierre-Etienne severely criticizes the statement made by the head of state on racial prejudice and the class war issue. The former opposition spokesman described the declarations by President Aristide as demagogic. Pierre-Etienne seizes the occasion to ask the opposition to prepare for the post-Aristide era with serenity.

This is what we call state terrorism. And since there is no state, then we will simply say that it is a terrorist power that exists in Haiti. When Aristide sends scoundrels to beat people who are demonstrating in the presence of the police, who are supposed to protect those citizens, it is a way for Aristide to terrorize the people. He instils fear and intimidates them.

The method that he uses is the method which terrorists normally use, which is to spread intimidation and fear. But the terrible thing is that, although Aristide always says: analfabet pa bet [meaning, the people are illiterate but not dumb], now in order for him to prove that illiterate people are dumb, he went to Les Cayes and spoke to this very category of people.

He once again evoked the issue of black, coloured people and mulattos, and we all remember the consequences of such an issue under the Duvalier regime. We can remember what happened in Jeremie under the Duvalier regime, when the scoundrels of that era raped mulatto girls and women and then killed them.

It is to this phase that Aristide is leading us now, because he dared stand with his wife, who is a mulatto and from the bourgeoisie and his children, who are Americans and asked the people to hate the bourgeoisie, the mulattos and to go and kill them. Was Aristide trying to make those people believe that his wife and children are not part of the bourgeoisie? We just do not know where he got those declarations.

Also, Aristide was a poor man who became rich overnight. He made personal use of the state’s money. If Aristide, with the humanitarian aid that comes from Colombia, manages to get 800m US dollars and if he really loved the people, even if that money was from the proceeds he got from books that he sold, like Jacques Maurice wants people to believe, why is it then that Aristide does not donate 700m dollars to the Haitian state? They could deposit that money in the central bank reserve, and that would then cause the exchange rate to fall to five gourdes to the dollar, for instance.

If Aristide really loves these black people with rough and unmanageable African hair, like he said, then he should then tell them that he does not like the hair of his wife and children. We think that Aristide is a demagogue. He is rousing the poor against the people who have worked hard and become rich over four generations, while Aristide himself only became rich overnight.

He asks his people to rise against the rich, but Aristide is the richest person in the country. Does that mean that the people have to rise against him and his wife and children, too?

We really think that Aristide is an irresponsible person. And the time has come today for the five sectors of civil society that sent their representatives to the Provisional Electoral Council [CEP] to make the decision to remove their representatives. The climate is not favourable and the conditions have not been met for elections to take place in the country.

If the regime prevents other citizens of the country from holding demonstrations, then if they go and dare vote for other political parties, will this CEP be able to provide fair election results?

So, I think that it is clear today that civil society should get together with other political parties in the opposition to decide on the alternative that they have to offer. It does not matter who will become president. That is not the issue. They need to determine what alternative they are going to offer. At the same time, we need to be careful that things do not happen the same way they did after the fall of Jean-Claude Duvalier.

Aristide is now in a whirlwind dynamic and he is bound to fall. Therefore, the opposition must make it clear that it will guarantee Aristide fair legal proceedings. And the same should be the case for former President Rene Preval. At the same time, however, we must say that we are not going on any manhunt. The moderate Lavalas members should know that they have their place in society and be assured that they will not be persecuted.

Those who committed bloody crimes and economic crimes will be prosecuted.