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U.S. Congressman Urges Haitians to Support New Leader

April 06, 1986|From Reuters

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti — A U.S. congressman on a fact-finding tour of Haiti on Saturday urged the nation to support its new leader, Lt. Gen. Henri Namphy, and praised his efforts to introduce democracy.

"How blessed you are in Haiti to have at the helm of the interim government Gen. Henri Namphy," Walter Fauntroy, a Democrat representing the District of Columbia, told reporters at the end of his weeklong visit.

The congressman said Namphy, who took over at the head of a ruling council when dictator Jean-Claude Duvalier was ousted in February, is the ideal midwife for a new Haiti.

He described Namphy as deeply committed to establishing democracy and said good progress had been made in selecting a group to write a new constitution and draw up electoral guidelines.

Fauntroy accused Duvalier supporters of stirring up trouble and criticized workers for making unrealistic wage demands before the new government has a chance to revive the economy.

Namphy's government has faced a series of protests in recent weeks over wages and its progress in improving the economy.

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