Originally: Pro-Aristide Demonstrators Seek Payment for Their “Work”

(Reporter Marie-Lucie Bonhomme) I am going to get in touch with Valery Numa. Good morning, Valery.

(Reporter Valery Numa) Good morning, Marie-Lucie. We are near the National Palace, where a group of people have gathered. They are Lavalas Family (FL) members, militants, and members of OPs (people’s organizations) who are shouting: Up with Aristide. They have announced that they are going to set fire to a number of faculties.

But we must explain, Marie-Lucie, that I saw some of them come from the National Palace. People who are employees at the National Palace, whom we clearly identified, and National Palace cameramen, who came from the palace with these men, were filming them. They were filming them while they shouted up with Aristide and that they are going to burn various faculties.

What happened is that, some of them, who are still in front of the wire fence around the National Palace, were demanding that something be said to them. One of the people I saw was talking to an employee of the National Palace Press Office and another person who works in the protocol service. Immediately after these people were filmed shouting up with Aristide, the employees of the National Palace entered the palace, while the other people remained at the wire fencing, saying that something must be said to them because their job is over.

About ten of these men said they are now going to the Faculty of Medicine. We are following them closely. They say they are going to the Faculty of Medicine because –

(Bonhomme – interrupting) – the students are not far away.

(Numa) That is right. they say they are going to chase the students and that they are going to set the faculty on fire. Another slogan they uttered is that the people, the ladies and gentlemen, who are demonstrating, are not students but members of OPs. This means that they agree that they themselves are members of OPs and that the others are members of OPs.

They add that this is a demonstration by scoundrels against scoundrels. So they agree that they are scoundrels and there is no problem. However, they say the students who are demonstrating are also scoundrels.

Currently, that is the situation. For the time being, the National Palace cameramen who were filming the men shouting up with Aristide have entered the palace. The men have finished what they had to do. As I said, actually, if you go to the vicinity of the National Palace now, you will see that they have gathered at the wire fence at the National Palace and are asking that a word be said to them.

(Bonhomme) Exactly, exactly. I would like to ask for a clarification, a little word, because we have seen similar scenes on several occasions. By the way, there is a statement that remains in our memory. After the OP members disrupted the demonstration that was supposed to be staged near the National Progressive Democratic Party of Haiti, they wondered how it is that after they did such a good job, Dismy Cesar (a member of the staff of President Aristide) was telling them that there was no money. When they say they want something to be said to them, do they mean that every worker needs a salary?

(Numa) Yes. That is the principle. But, the poor bloke who came to them had a list, a sheet of paper in his hands. I do not know if it was intended to list the names or something else, but he came out of the palace and allegedly told the people that he is not the person in charge. Then he rushed back to the palace. So, he is not in charge of that.

(Bonhomme) He is not in charge of the payroll issue?

(Numa) No. He is the one in charge of that (sentence as heard). Then, they entered the palace. Is the incident over? We cannot tell for the simple reason that the men are still there.

But we must tell you, Marie-Lucie, that most of them are always in front of the Ministry of the Interior every day. They establish their base there every day. They are precisely the ones who carried out the movement. The only difference is that several of them came from the palace. Perhaps they had some motivation.

But when they arrived near the Ministry of Public Health building, they started to make a noise, hit things, shout up with Aristide, down with the students and so on. As I said, people came from the National Palace with cameras and recorders to record the statements by those people. Perhaps this information will be used by the state-owned television.

(Bonhomme) Anyway, we are following the events. Those who can are encouraged to watch Television Nationale d’Haiti. Thank you, Valery.