Duvalier mobbed by supporters at sacred waterfall

Skynews.com; 19:51, Monday July 18, 2011

Thousands in Haiti have jostled for space to take part in a voodoo ceremony under a sacred waterfall. Followers believe that the waters can cleanse the soul.The waterfall became a site of pilgrimage following claims in the 19th century that the Virgin Mary appeared beneath it.

Roman Catholicism is the official religion of Haiti but residents mix it with the
mystical practice of voodoo.

This year’s celebration saw ex-President Jean Claude Duvalier attend the ceremonies.

Upon arrival in the area, his car was surrounded by hundreds of supporters, the crowd growing to several thousand as the people tried to get near their friend.

It is difficult to rationalize his obvious popularity, with the peasant masses, with the statements of UN human rights experts who speak of him as some sort of
devil. The mass of people spontaneously gathered around Duvalier, respectfully
reaching out to touch him.

Duvalier was definitely the king for a day.


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