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#525654 - 09/07/17 05:23 AM PUP Takes A Stand On Tower Hill  
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 54,967
Marty Offline
Marty  Offline
Goodnight and welcome to 7News. Tonight we'll start as we sometimes do when major events happen, with extended coverage of the drama at the Tower Hill Bridge in Orange Walk where police had to use tear gas to disperse a crowd of PUP protestors.

Joining me in studio to break down all that happened on the bridge from beginning to end is News Director Jules Vasquez, who has the sunburned face and the red tear-gassed eyes to show that he was out there today.

Jules, let's jump right into it - how did it all start?

Edward Broaster, Assistant Commissioner of Police
"Sir, please move your vehicle."

Hon. Jose Mai
"Arrest me sir. Respectfully I will not move. We are asking for two hours."

Edward Broaster, Assistant Commissioner of Police
"You will not stay here two hours."

Hon. Jose Mai
"We are here to show that we are fed up of UDP corruption and you sir must put down yours arms and show that you are tired too of corruption, because you know and you feel it too."

Paul "Chicken Dread" Ferguson
"But they help support the corruption."

Edward Broaster, Assistant Commissioner of Police
"You all already demonstrate what you had to do."

Micah Goodin, reporter
"Sir what happens if they block the bridge? What action would you take?"

Hon. Jose Mai
"All we are asking is for 2 hours."

Edward Broaster, Assistant Commissioner of Police
"You can't block anything. You should know better than. You already did your message in Orange Walk. That's why we give you all a permit."

Hon. John Briceno, PUP Leader
"That's our constitutional right."

Edward Broaster, Assistant Commissioner of Police
"Not to inconvenience motorist and other citizens and you know that Mr. Briceno."

Paul "Chicken Dread" Ferguson
"Remember the Prime Minister called for civil unrest one time when he was in opposition."

Hon. Jose Mai
"All we want to show is that we are discontented and the people are behind us and they will show how discontented they are. You know that sir. We are not breaking any rules."

Paul "Chicken Dread" Ferguson
"We are tired."

Hon. John Briceno, PUP Leader
"We want to stand here at the Phillip Goldson Highway to make a point that we have to do something about this. We can't continue to sweep things under the rug. What is the Prime Minister doing about Gaspar Vega? What about the independent inquiry that we've been asking? What about the Integrity Commission? The Public Accounts Committee? The Auditors General's Report. The Prime Minister needs to act."

Reporter
"Are you prepared to be arrested out there this afternoon?"

Hon. John Briceno, PUP Leader
"Well if that's what they have to do then they can arrest me."

Reporter
"Because you don't have a permit to be here."

Hon. John Briceno, PUP Leader
"They can arrest me if they wish. Let us remind that it was no other than the Prime Minister who's calling for civil disobedient, because he said that it had the moral authority. The Prime Minister has no moral authority to speak to us. We have a moral responsibility to this country to stand up and to make the point that we are going to block this road so that the Prime Minister can understand that enough is enough."

Protester
"Time for a change. We stand up for our rights. Today we are standing up for our rights. Call election now Dean Barrow."

Jules Vasquez, reporter
"Mr. Leader of the Opposition what is your intention out here today?"

Hon. John Briceno, PUP Leader
"This is something spontaneous. We just want to make sure that the Prime Minister understand to the demands of the people. They need to do a commission of inquiry into the pilfering and the stealing in the Ministry of Natural Resources. They need to take out a case against Gaspar Vega for misfeasance in public office. They need to open the public accounts committee meetings to the public and they need to instruct the integrity commission to ask for everyone - all representatives and ministers to report their financial status for 2012. I know now that the police is blocking our people from coming out here, but we are going to be here and we are going to make the point that we have had enough. It is no other than the Prime Minister who said that the PUP had no moral authority when he was talking about civil disobedience. Well he has lost that moral authority. We are going to stand up here."

Jules Vasquez, reporter
"But you are fomenting a volatile situation. We just saw a very serious police enter with tear gas."

Hon. John Briceno, PUP Leader
"Let them do what they want to do. This government has lost the moral authority. They have no moral authority to do what they are doing. The Prime Minister needs to start to do the right things."

Hon. Jose Mai
"All we are asking for, we are not hurting anybody. We are not asking for sustain civil unrest. All we are showing is sending a message to Dean Barrow."

Sr.Supt. David Chi - OC, Orange Walk Police
"You are blocking the highway."

Hon. Jose Mai
"You will have to arrest me. I not beating anyone. I am not cursing anyone. I am sending a message Mr. Chi and you all are supposed to help us send the message. They have you all working hard taking care of a criminal Gaspar Vega every single day for free when you and I are paying for that. That is unfair for you all Mr. Chi."

Sr. Supt. David Chi - OC, Orange Walk Police
"Please move the vehicle or else we will move it by force. We will move what we need to move Mr. Baeza. You all have understanding, we need to keep the road clear. This is major highway and vehicles have to pass here."

Servulo Baeza
"We need to send a message. We need to stay on the ground and send a message."

Sr. Supt. David Chi - OC, Orange Walk Police
"Please your vehicle from off the road."

Hon. John Briceno, PUP Leader
"We will move it but we can't find the key."

Sr. Supt. David Chi - OC, Orange Walk Police
"We will move it by force you know Mr. Party Leader, good."

Edward Broaster, Assistant Commissioner of Police
"We already told you to move your vehicle and you refused to move your vehicle. You all move this vehicle." (speaking to the officers)

Hon. John Briceno, PUP Leader
"We are a peaceful party. The prime minister and the UDP have lost the moral authority to run this country. He refuses to do the right thing. He refuses to act against his corrupt ministers and we want to make the point enough is enough. He needs to take action against his former deputy prime minister."

Reporter
"Would you say this is just the beginning of the revolution of the People's United Party?"

Hon. John Briceno, PUP Leader
"There are many ways to do resistance, it's not only through demonstration. There are many ways that we can have."

"I remember back in 2005 that he said he is going to call for civil disobedience, because he said that the government lost its moral authority. I am telling Dean Barrow that he has lost his moral authority to govern this country and until he acts, until he takes decisive actions against his corrupt ministers, then we will be able to respect him, but as it is he has no moral authority to tell us anything about breaking the law. We as a party, we are the peaceful constructive revolution, but we stand up for the people and we stand up for poor people. That is what the PUP is all about and we are demanding that the prime minister does an investigation."

Well it started at 12:05 pm - 7News was the first out there as PUP representatives John Bricneo and Jose Man pulled up in their vehicles to block the road.


Channel 7


#525675 - 09/08/17 05:20 AM Re: PUP Takes A Stand On Tower Hill [Re: Marty]  
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 54,967
Marty Offline
Marty  Offline

Home Affairs Minister Said The Media Enjoyed Being Roughed Up

The Minister of Home Affairs Wilfred Elrington had no apologies. He says that, to him, it looks like we in the media were having a good old time getting hauled and pulled:...

Hon. Wilfred Elrington, Minister of Foreign Affairs
"I thought the police did a good job. There was no provision under the terms for the demonstration, for it to be extended to the toll bridge and I would not have encourage the blocking of the bridge. I dont think that was necessary at all. So that I thought police had to act to make sure that in fact the commerce of the country and the free passage of people in the society were not impeded."

Jules Vasquez, reporter
"And the roughing up of the media?"

Hon. Wilfred Elrington, Minister of Foreign Affairs
"I thought that the media were enjoying it actually or were in the thick of things. When you look abroad you see the same thing happening. You have some people in the media who are very aggressive and because they want to get the most advantageous position, they tend to get in the midst of the crowd and it's very difficult for the law enforcement officials to be able to distinguish between who is media. So in the process things will happen, but there is no animosity, there is no ill will. Its juts part of the melee that takes place. It's natural and normal in my view."

Police Minister Apologizes, But Says Police Were Doing Their Job on Bridge

Last night we showed you everything that happened when the PUP went to block the Tower Hill Bridge in Orange Walk. It unfolded quite quickly after the party had a rally in the town's Central Park. From there, the PUP Leader John Bricneo and his Orange Walk South Representative raced to the bridge and blocked it. The rest, as they say, is history - or at least history in the making. 45 Minutes later, the bridge and the road were cleared and the police had teargassed and dispersed dozens of party supporters. But did police go too far? And did they target and attack a female journalist? Those are some of the many burning questions in the public mind after yesterday's event son the bridge.

Today, the Ministry of Home Affairs and the police took control of the narrative. Minister of State Elodio Aragon, flanked by the Commander of Police Operations Edward Broaster opened with a brief account of the day's events, and an apology:...

Hon. Elodio Aragon, Minister of State - Home Affairs
"The parade and the rally proceeded peacefully up until a call was made by the Leader of the Opposition for the protestors to proceed to the toll bridge and to block the highway. They proceeded to the toll bridge to stage an illegal demonstration. Members of the police department were immediately dispatched to the toll bridge in order to persuade any such event from taking place."

"Immediately thereafter a group of people led by senior members of the People's United Party including Servulo Baeza, Hon. Abelardo Mai and the Leader of the Opposition Hon. John Briceno and others arrived at the toll bridge and proceeded to block the bridge with vehicles and gathered at the northern end approach of the bridge of the Phillip Goldson Highway."

"Police reinforcements arrived promptly and took measures to dialogue and to disperse the crowd that was illegally blocking the approach to the bridge and the free flow of traffic. Despite the efforts to get to them to disperse peacefully, members of the crowd attempted to resist the efforts of the police. The police eventually cleared both the highway and the bridge with the use of CS gas. The police apologizes to those members of the public including the members of the press who were out there about their lawful business and were affected by the measures use by the police to restore law and order and to protect the members of the public in general."

Channel 7



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