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Remembering Gerald Mathurin

Tuesday, 13 March 2018

The former Minister, Haitian activist Gérald Mathurin died on March 3 at his home in Jacmel, South-East of Haiti. Creator of the Regional coordination of organizations of the Southeast (CROSE), organization that collaborates with Alliance for solidarity for more than one decade. Gerald was a symbol of commitment to his people and his disappearance leaves a gap that will not be easy to meet.

12-10-10Pichon (18)

"Only by knowing our past we project ourselves forward" "The international community is playing with Haiti'"

To dismiss it, we wanted to pick up some testimonies of compañer@s from Alliance for solidarity that had the occasion to meet him and work with him.

Rosa M Tristan- Interview 2013

Two years ago I had the opportunity to meet you and talk with him during a trip to Haiti. Greeted me at his mansion in space but unpopulated everything luxury on a stony streets and unpaved, as many in Jacmel. "Here we can not have the standard of living in Europe, but if we have to live in a sustainable and dignified way for all", told me in a meeting then marked by the close presidential elections, that the banana businessman Jovenel Moïse, finally won in the Center-right party. Agricultural engineer, Gérald Mathurin served as Minister of agriculture during the Presidency of René Préval, but it lasted little more than one year in office. A too critical to the structures of power. On 3 March, and at the age of 64 years, died by a stroke, leaving many Haitians who saw in it the leader of the peasants and the young 'orphans'. In 2013 I could make you This interview whose analysis is still valid and is still accurate.

Egido Sanz

Saturday, March 3, just past noon received a serious blow, I felt something inside me just break, Gérald Mathurin, great friend, companion, we had left.

First person I met and that I welcomed newly arriving to Haiti in 2008, Gerald, with which I was fortunate to work closely during the three years that I was in Jacmel, since it was the co-founder of the Regional coordination of organizations of the Southeast , CROSE, the historical counterpart of international solidarity in Haiti;

This news has been a hard blow, let me a great sadness and emptiness; but at the same time, it was a great luck, fills me with great satisfaction, have been able to know him, listen, learn, share many moments and work alongside him, alongside CROSE. From the first meetings that I shared with him upon my arrival in Haiti, I felt that it was an exceptional person; at any time, you were always well received, at his side had room for all the people who arrived, known, unknown, all were integrated; share, talk, discuss, exchange ideas, laugh, make jokes... taught me much in this country, it helped me to understand, analyze, and understand its functioning, social, political.

I discovered in every day to a person of integrity, commitment, wrestler tireless on behalf of social recognition and the emergence of more disadvantaged classes of Haitian society, the rural, incite world to the formation of young people, to be feel motivated and be integrated into the required social and political construction of the country. In any conversation that you keep with it, conveyed strength and conviction, nobody left him indifferent, Battler for the emancipation and the struggle for the rights of women, peasants, farmers, especially in the Department of the South-East of Haiti. Being at the forefront of the movement social CROSE, associations, social organizations, have been strengthened with who has carried out a social battle, always accompanied by an alternative political discourse for the construction of a more just society, transparent and that had space for citizen participation. The battle was not easy, but always remained in the fight.

As they say in Haiti, you've crossed. FRIEND, companion, I wish you happy trip.

I agree with the pain that so many people are feeling at the moment; my mood and breath thoughts as he conveyed in times harder, going for all the companions / I of CROSE, his partner, his family, friends, friends and other people who have loved him, have known or have had the opportunity to share some time with Gerald.

Ana R. Mayor

Perhaps it was the year 2010, before the terrible earthquake. Newly arrived in Jacmel we went to the offices of CROSE and there I saw him for the first time. It was in a small ramshackle office. I'd been warned of his magnetism and strength and my first impression of Gérald Mathurin was not what I expected. The case of the first meeting was prosaic. We had to talk about allocation of posts, budgets, reporting methods. In each of their proposals and statements concern was revealed by formulas and ways in which relations between international solidarity and CROSE, organizations that we represented, should relate. They were rigid, bureaucratic, postcolonial, forms without travel... I felt uneasy, as certain of its findings and of my scope limited.

But when I actually met him, it was another day. Their hospitality took him to invite each passerby in Jacmel to his simple home, next to the sea. There we saw dusk, had dinner at our home and talked nearly until dawn. At the end of the evening I realized. Gerald was the last living representative of an endangered species. Intellectual and activist, master and friend, realistic and idealistic, heir directly and, perhaps, the last still alive of the Tiermondisme.

Thank you for not never give up Gerald!

Javier García

On every trip to Haiti, chat with Gerald was a must stop for trying to understand what was happening in the country...

Met you for the first time in port Prince in 2007, former Minister of agriculture and then a prominent personality of the Haitian social movement. Impressed me clarity that had with respect to the multiple problems of the country and how to make a country as Haiti could take a leap forward to begin to "exist" in this world. He would repeat many times that it was an unknown country for centuries, that There was no for the Western world, and I think that no reason was missing... Via CROSE tried to set up what in what was believed building a movement of people who became citizens with rights. It was very clear that it was necessary to build bridges between the agendas and demands of the various base organizations (farmers, women and youth...) present in Southeast Haiti. To an inert state is necessary a vibrant society that can reactivate a State structure that do face the challenges of a country such as Haiti. Gerald was in that do vibrate people and wake facing a unjust reality that deserves to be transformed.

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