Leaving Matignon, Friday, March 11, William Martinet does not compromise. At the micro iTV, the president of the National Union of Students of France (UNEF) calls to “amplify the protest movement” against the proposed labor reform. No way to scroll side to Manuel Valls, who “refuses to discuss.”
For the student of 27, this sequence is baptism of fire office. After the strike of 9 March, where over 50 university towns beat the pavement, the UNEF and its President have every intention of staying at the forefront of the front against the Labour Law. But, challenged the organization she will unite the mobilization and put students on the street? Does it help to bend the government?
A big responsibility now falls on the shoulders of William Swift, a young biology student who finds himself in the spotlight. Who is actually head of the UNEF, still unknown to the public a few days ago? Portrait by ten points.
“Apparatchik” the boss of the UNEF, as persifle “The Point “? Nothing is less sure. It is rumored that he be seeking any office nor the PS nor the government, unlike its predecessors. His relatives crunch in the real activist. “It was never reluctant to go to the field, he is the type to move the ass,” recalls a fellow.
He joined the UNEF during the student revolt against the CPE in 2006, William Martinet is first billsticker. “It started, like everyone else, to distribute fliers, going door to door in University City, make interventions in lecture hall and sign petitions,” recalls a former organization. He then abandoned a hair brush the glue for a seat in the national office.
Biology student, “tenth year.” It’s the little quip site Atlantico, tidy right. Still studying at age 27, William Martinet spent his tank in 2006 and has validated his degree in biology in 2015. Especially the fault of union involvement and student jobs (see next point).
Today Master “social economy”, the student has toiled to finance his studies. “I made sandwiches at Subway or cleaned sidewalks in Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines,” he says in “World”. This expedition caving in student insecurity led him to declare on television sets:
“When you are a student, half of us work alongside our studies, McDonald’s, Carrefour That. take our time courses and revision, and it is a social injustice. “
Small snook in passing reporters who accuse him of not knowing” the real work ” .
“Despite its passage to the presidency, which makes some arrogant, he does not take the big head, it stayed super accessible “, says a former head of the UNEF. Quality that all recognize it without forcing.
But “since he spent president, he spends more time working alone, to isolate intellectually to think,” laments another former National Office . Loss of sense of community? Molting is due to the inclusion of the function, size up his comrades.
In January 2014, “Les Inrockuptibles” are a scandal in the organization, reporting that Martinet would plotting to overthrow the former president of the UNEF, and impose a reformist line. All guided by the socialist deputy Pouria Amirshahi. For a close, this putsch story has no meaning: “At the time, no one understood where it came from, because it is absurd,” he said
<. h5> “the choice was obvious William was clearly the best for the job.”
All the confession: Martinet have proven especially as responsible for the academic committee at the Office. Still, some shadows hover over the estate. “It’s a cooptage” loose a former head of the UNEF. At the time of the award, he is the only candidate for the position: it is an ancient tradition in the student union – as did the PCF. To apply, you have to be in the good graces of the statutory responsibility of the National Office. Voices whisper Emmanuel Zemmour – “Manu”, the former CEO of the union – have endorsed.
“As always, there is also the legend that the Socialist Party played a role there, but you never know really”, will disabuse an old organization.
A former classmate described him as “very diplomatic with all the tendencies of the UNEF, very pedagogue it does not seek conflict, it is absolutely not authoritarian. ” In late 2008, when he started as a trade unionist, William Swift arrives, Unef stickers pinned to the chest, in the amphitheater of the Faculty of Medicine at Versailles – “all acquired local corpo of Carabins, who is anti-Unef” recalls a fellow
This does not miss. booing, invectives, as usual. The corpo hoarse: “The UNEF is fags.” On the spans, students take up the slogan in chorus. A former union still laughing: “He has not dismantled, he stayed and spoke educational way to explain the issue of general meetings and proposes that the UNEF.”
“even the face of overwhelming opposition and aggressive, he remained extremely calm. he knew he was going to box, but he had the courage to go anyway. others were deflated …”
Martinet has a hobby: cycling. And its summer during the Tour de France. “That’s what I remember most about him, outside of politics. It was great discussions on the Tour de France with him … There are even pictures of him repairing a bike that circulate in the organization of networks “, evokes an activist.
from humble extraction, William Martinet is nursing son. “It is not a wealthy family. He comes from the middle class or lower middle class,” loose a former comrade, “which is not easy to live in Paris.” No militant atavism: only a grandfather inset to the CGT. The experience of his schooling in Versailles High School made him say “World”:
“The gap between these two worlds made me realize early on that he had to choose his camp and commitment “
Detail striking tie – the accessory of the ruling classes, to believe. Bourdieu – is cast away. Like his predecessor, he dud casual, “prole”, “normcore” often mismatched. Good unionist. On TV shows, he dressed like in college. Example in January 2014, on France24: he tumbles in hoodie, hair all matted. “One day he arrived in disaster on the ground, he was dressed in hard and as quickly as possible, it’s him,” enjoys a former of the UNEF.
The media exposure has arrived without warning at the beginning of the anti-labor movement. As is tradition, he is heckled from the start, especially in the press classified right. “Le Point” was portrayed in “old student” and vile careerist. Atlantico (again) taunts a student leader “future minister.” “It’s amazing how he got align the press over the last two weeks,” says one former union.
Summum chic with the edition of “Point” of 4 March last, that the box cover with Philippe Martinez (head of the CGT) and Martine Aubry (PS mayor of Lille), with unflattering titraille “the last dinosaurs”. The head of the UNEF replica humorously, replacing the profile photo to his Twitter and Facebook accounts with an image of “Denver, the Last Dinosaur”, the character of the cartoon. A wise choice for a union to extinction.