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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Wednesday, May 9, 2001

ADB demonstration scaled back from 5,000 people to 1,500

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By Johnny Brannon
Advertiser Staff Writer

As the Asian Development Bank's board of governors formally convenes its annual meeting today, opponents will take to the streets for what could be the largest protest march Hawai'i has seen in years.

Tadao Chino, left, president of the Asian Development Bank, shares a laugh with Joanne Tachibana and James McDivitt, both of the United Nations Association, during day two of the ADB conference.

Bruce Asato • The Honolulu Advertiser

Police say they will be out in full force to ensure the event remains peaceful, and streets around the Hawai'i Convention Center and Waikiki will be closed to traffic for several hours.

Protest organizers had estimated that 5,000 or more people would participate in the "March for Global Justice and Indigenous Rights," but yesterday they scaled expectations back dramatically.

It's more likely that 1,000 to 1,500 people will show up to blast the Asian Development Bank and show support for organized labor, environmental protection and native peoples, according to planners of the march.

"I think it will be a real stepping stone for social justice here in Hawai'i," said ADBwatch co-coordinator Joshua Cooper.

Honolulu Police Chief Lee Donohue said officers would not unduly interfere with the march but would be on the alert for trouble.

Native Hawaiians will be well represented at the march, said sovereignty activist Haunani-Kay Trask.

"We will be there, and our message is that we're not in support of the Asian Development Bank and the militarization of the Honolulu Police Department," she said.

She and others who attended a press conference near the Hawai'i Convention Center yesterday said they were disturbed that police had showed up to film it. Donohue said he knew nothing of the filming but that it could be warranted to protect the rights of any officers accused of wrongdoing.