Media

Haiti-Press-Carnival: Journalist Censored and Musicians Threatened

JACMEL, Haiti (defend.ht) - A Journalist and two musicians have complained of abuse and threats from zealous supporters of President Martelly during the carnival time. Serious incidents took place the last weekend in Port-au-Prince and Jacmel

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A journalist of Radio TV Caraibes (Port-au-Prince) has been prevented by a police officer to take some shots of President Martelly who attended the carnival organized in Jacmel (South-east of Haiti), on Sunday February 12.

This reporter says he wanted to interview and to film the president and, seeing that he worked for Radio Caraibes, Mr Martelly said he will not answer his questions.

The journalist complied and dropped the interview. Minutes later, he noticed that the president was responding to questions from another media. So he approached his mic to record Michel Martelly when an officer of the National Police ordered him not to do so. The officer has flatly stated that the journalists of Radio Caraibes had not the right to record or film the Haitian president.

In addition, musicians were also threatened during the weekend for composing carnival songs ironic to President Martelly.

In Port-au-Prince, the singer of the musical band "Vwadezil" whose carnival song is ironic to MINUSTAH and the current government was forced to cease his performance par a policeman who, he said, “stuck a gun to his head”.

"This is the first time since I participate in the carnival such a thing happens to me, I used irony for previous presidents, whether it was Boniface Alexandre or René Préval, I have never been bothered, "said the singer.

Another singer, Antonio Cheramy (Don K-to), reported that gunmen had opened fire, the last weekend, on his mother's house in Port-au-Prince and smashed the windows of his car. The lead vocal of the group Brother's Posse, too, had made a meringue that has not pleased the supporters of Michel Martelly.

During the carnival time, the musicians through their carnival songs, are used to deride the political situation and the government, because the carnival allows this.

The former musician Sweet Micky, now President Martelly, himself had a habit of insulting the mothers of Presidents Aristide and Preval. He was used to, in front of the presidential palace, lift up the pink little skirt he wore, showing his back and using salacious words, so that the media broadcasting live the carnival had to stop retransmission.

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