The former member of the well-known “Calle 13” Puerto Rican band, Residente, defends the Nicaraguan people’s struggle and offers a response to Daniel Ortega’s followers.
By Yader Luna (Confidencial)
HAVANA TIMES – The Puerto Rican singer Rene Perez Joglar, popularly known as “Residente”, recently sent a message to protesters who are demanding the resignation of Daniel Ortega. In the message, he declared that those in Nicaragua who are unhappy should protest “to the end”.
“Nicaragua, keep protesting until the end. Today, we younger generations are critical of all governments. The government that screws up is a government that doesn’t deserve to exist,” wrote the former member of the Calle 13 band on Twitter.
The tweet from the interpreter of the well-known song ‘No hay nadie como tu” [“There’s no one like you”] was shared by thousands of his followers, who thanked him for his support of the Nicaraguan people who’ve been protesting in the streets since last April 18.
Always a controversial figure
Residente’s message wasn’t well received by sympathizers of Daniel Ortega’s government. They immediately attacked the artist on social media, calling him a “fascist” and a “Coup supporter”. The singer of “America” didn’t take it quietly, however, but opted to respond publicly to several of the accusations.
One of those who wrote to him on the popular site was Venezuelan reporter Erika Ortega Sanoja, who used a quote attributed to Simon Bolivar: “They’ve dominated us by ignorance more than by force.”
Ortega Sanoja, who describes herself as a “Bolivarian” on her profile, recommended to the Puerto Rican that he stop getting his information from CNN’s Spanish language site. Instead, she invited him to follow the Twitter posts of Madeleine Garcia, Telesur correspondent in Venezuela, and Oswaldo Rivera, who moderates a program called “Zurda Konducta” [“Left Behavior”] on Venezuelan television. These reporters are two of the foreigners who write most favorably about Ortega’s government on the social network.
“I don’t watch CNN,” the singer responded. “An ignorant person believes that the person who thinks differently is ignorant. When I write something it’s because I’m clear about it. I recommend that you travel and get to know the world, as I know it. You have to learn to be critical, even of our own ideals.”
Following this response, there was a counterattack from the Venezuelan MC Oswaldo Rivera, known as “Cabeza e’Mango” [“Mango head”]. Rivera emphasized that he’s had “the opportunity to be in various countries, ‘traveling the world’, with the difference that you see it from the stage and I from the liberation struggles and clamors for social justice in the world.”
“Residente” didn’t remain silent but answered that he’s been “fighting in the streets” since he was born and that “the stage” is just what puts food on his table.
The singer has visited Nicaragua on several occasions and has declared himself to be an admirer of Sandino. Since the protests began, the performer has kept a close watch on the situation that the country is living through and was one of the first to show his solidarity on Twitter.
“Nicaragua – from far away it hurts me as if I were right there. From the first time I went to your country, I fell in love with the force of your history, filled with the dreams of Sandino. Don’t allow that dream to become a nightmare,” he wrote on April 19th [the first day of the student massacre by government forces.].