Saturday Mar.28, A Long Long Day

Malagasy young people strongly represented during the rally.

I could not attend the rallies during the week days so I can’t tell if there were also many young Malagasy who joined the legalists. Otherwise, they were thousands (ranging from 10 to 20) to be present at Ambohijatovo Park last Saturday.

Madagascar knew its digital boom some years ago and now you can find (not as easy as before the “Black Monday“) at a reasonable price an amateur digital camera or a camcorder. It was not a surprise to see them lately during the rallies. To record a piece of History 😉

The age is never a barriere to either claim your rights or to voice your concern. It’s cool to see all those old people under a hot sun still waving their little flags.

The animators said that Marc Ravalomanana will address his supporters at the “Place du 13 Mai”. The crowd looked forward to hearing its “father” (We didn’t know from where the call would be made because at the time nobody could confirm where Ravalomanana was).

We all know what happened later on. Security forces prevented the protesters from going to “13 Mai”. I won’t be able to tell you exactly the “whys” because I didn’t see what happened down there. I staid 300m away from where the clash was. They started to open fire – they used real bullets – and then used tear-gas to scatter the crowd. I saw ambulance taking injured people – but dead, I could not see with my own eyes. When I watched the news the evening they reported 3 dead people.

When you join a rally

When you join a rally make sure first that you don’t go alone or at least someone knows where you are. Second, bring a hat if you don’t want to bother yourself with umbrellas. Unless you want to have sunburns :p. Third, always think of the worst that could happen. I mean an exit way in case of trouble and a place where you and your friends can meet if you get lost. Also make sure that you’ll be (or someone else) able to contact your relatives in case of accident. Fourth, watch out the pick pockets. Fith, stay away, far away from a clash. But if you like it well go ahead. I met miss tear-gas on Saturday and she is nasty!! If you happen to come across her take a fabric (handkerchief, tshirt …) wet it with water and put it on your face. Use it like a mask and run away. It can help. And last, call mom and dad from time to time because they may worry :).

PS: Zain really sucked last Saturday. I tried to update my twitter a hundred damn times but there was no way to send SMSes.