Haitian journalist Jean Gary Apollon, on his daily radio program Sabor Latino, demands that President Barack Obama immediately free the Cuban Five. (Foto del autor), a photo by Pan-African News Wire File Photos on Flickr.
Havana July 19, 2011
Solidarity with the Five over the airwaves
Juan Diego Nusa Peñalver, special correspondent
PORT-AU-PRINCE. – Haitian journalist Jean Gary Apollon is well-known in his country as a result of his popular radio program Sabor Latino, broadcast Radio Signal FM 90.5, one of the most important stations in the country, located in Pétion-Ville, just outside of Port-au-Prince. The program is presented as a bridge of friendship and integration among Latin American countries and supports just causes around the world.
He was calm and collected enough to protect the radio console and keep his program on the air precisely when the devastating earthquake of January 12, 2010 hit and asked the international community to come to the aid of his long suffering country.
Loquacious, persuasive and an impassioned professional for more than 20 years, Apollon prides himself on being one of the many friends Cuba has in Haiti. He also joins the Cuban people in calling for the freedom of the Cuban Five, unjustly imprisoned in the United States for their efforts combating terrorism.
Granma was able to witness how, over the airwaves during Sabor Latino, Apollon expressed his hope that Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez would fully recuperate, as well as his best wishes for Fidel’s health and demanded that President Barack Obama use his executive powers to immediately free Gerardo Hernández, Antonio Guerrero, Fernando González, Ramón Labañino and René González, "since any sane person understands that they never endangered the national security of the United States."
The Cuban patriots were only working to expose macabre terrorist plots launched from South Florida against the Cuban people. "They had nothing to do with any sort of espionage on U.S. soil," the radio host reiterated.
The U.S. government, which claims to be waging a war on terrorism, should heed the arguments of the Five and dismantle the anti-Cuban mafia in Miami, he said, "This would, in fact, be a great service to humanity."
After explaining that the trial to which Gerardo, Antonio, Fernando, Ramón and René were subjected was arbitrary and political in nature, he confirmed that the Haitian people support their freedom and denounce the violation of their human rights.
"I know many young Haitians who have sent letters to the U.S. administration demanding the release of these brave men… Solidarity with their just and human cause will always have a place on Sabor Latino," he said.
A proponent of Haiti’s full integration within Latin America, Apollon, who in addition to speaking Creole and French, the official languages of his country, communicates perfectly in Spanish and English as well, describes as successful and generous Cuba’s health care and educational collaboration with Haiti, reiterating that the country has yet to recover from either the earthquake or the cholera epidemic.
"There are hundreds of Haitian doctors who have been trained free of charge by Cuba; its help has been invaluable in the struggle against illiteracy with the use of the ‘Yes, I Can’ method of reading and writing instruction and thousands of my compatriots have regained or improved their vision as a result of the Cuban Operación Milagro ophthalmological program," affirmed Apollon, who has also visited Cuba and opposes the U.S. economic, commercial and financial blockade of the country.
"It is a contribution that my country does not has the money to repay and for which Cuba has never requested anything in return," he added.