April 21, 2008
Protestors gathered in Ottawa this past weekend to speak out against the Security and Prosperity Partnership (SPP) as the leaders of Canada, the US and Mexico prepare to meet to discuss the agreement Monday and Tuesday in New Orleans.
Organizers of the Ottawa protest included the Council of Canadians, Tyrone Drummond, and Mike Fancie (Student Federation of Ottawa U ).
As Drummond told Vive, “We had a march from the Black Spider to the American Embassy and then to Parliament Hill for speeches. About 60 or 70 people through the day showed up for speech about the SPP and related topics. RCMP were quiet cooperative and supportive to the march and speeches. It was recorded by a local activist and hope to have media available on the web soon.”
To see more pics, visit: Ottawa SPP Facebook Protest Album
People were making “Stop the SPP” signs, passing out kazoos, yo-yoing and generally socializing. The atmosphere was positive and the weather was absolutely perfect. By about 1:30 the group had to be over 60 people, and more were showing up. About 5 minutes before we marched a cameraman and journalist from CBC made their way to the center of the group and located the organizer of the protest for for an on-camera interview. After his interview, the organizer turned on his loudspeaker and rallied the protesters with a short pep talk.
With our signs and kazoos we made a path from the spider statue down Sussex, to Wellington st and west to Parliament, chanting anti-SPP slogans and trying to draw public attention. Halfway down sussex we were intercepted by RCMP officers who spoke briefly with the organizer, and then followed us in cruisers to Parliament.
We arrived at the gates of Parliament hill and were told to make even more noise as we marched through the yard to the steps right at the foot of the nation’s headquarters.
There was another 20 or more people waiting there for us; speakers and their entourages I suppose.
There was about an hour and a half of speeches over a loudspeaker right on the steps of Parliament. A dozen or more cameramen circled the group snapping shots of protesters and the speakers the whole time. A lot of people who were in the area joined the group and listened for a while. There were a lot of people curious about what was going on and more than once someone asked me what the SPP was. There were flyers being handed out in an attempt to spread awareness.