President Jovenel Moïse says he wants dialogue but acts like a dictator By RAJ
Mixed signals are being sent by President Moïse and his team, making one wonder whether we’re dealing with people who know what they really want.
On December 12, the office of President Moïse’s Chief of staff sent a letter to formally invite the “Passerelle,” to a meeting on December 16. The “Passerelle” is one of the moderate opposition coalitions that have been calling for the president’s resignation. But he wanted to hear their “proposal” and see what can be worked out.
Two days later, on December 14, hooded men, said to be policemen working for the Port- au-Prince prosecutor, showed up at the residences of Dimitri Vorbe and Elizabeth Débrosse with war- rants for their arrest. As has been reported, President Moïse has targeted Dimitri Vorbe, the vice president of Sogener as one to bring down for showing opposition to his rule. In the process, other officials of Sogener have also become targets of the government. That’s how Elizabeth Débrosse, the widow of President René Préval, has also become a target. She’s Sogener’s financial officer and also a board member.
Fortunately, neither Dimitri Vorbe nor Lady Débrosse-Préval were home, and the security guards at the residences refused entrance to the disguised goons who weren’t accompanied by any judge for such an operation. We’re fast returning to the era of the Duvaliers that excelled in illegal arrests by their goons called the Tontons-Macoute.
The illegal action against the Sogener officials have caused an uproar, to the point that one of the lawyers hired by the Moïse team to go after the company and those connected to its poke out publicly, denouncing the “illegal” nature of the action against Mr. Vorbe and Mrs. Débrosse-Préval. The lawyer, Louis Newton Saint-Juste, said the action against the two individuals “is definitely illegal.” In an interview to AlterPresse, an online news service, he also stated “an arrest warrant deals with arresting the individual, but has nothing to do with a search of the home of anyone.”
The illegal arrests in Haiti have had echoes abroad. Last Sunday, December 15, The Miami Herald published an eye- opening story entitled “Haiti wants to reform its energy sec- tor, so Police showed up to arrest Power Providers.” At the outset, Jacqueline Charles, the correspondent, writes: “A former Haitian government prosecutor is calling the attempted arrest of the widow of late Haitian President René Préval and the director of an independent power provider, illegal and harassment.”
Ms. Charles also quoted Jude Fabre Bretous, a Port-au-Prince lawyer, she says, who studied international trade and business law at New York’s Fordham University’s LLM program. He said: “He finds the judicial system’s wrangling in the [Sogener] case to be very troubling.” Mr. Bretous is prophetic in what he says: “Individual liberties, which are guaranteed under the constitution are being trampled on and that means ‘everyone has an interest in what’s happening.’’ And the nail from him: “Tomorrow it can be me, it could be you or someone else who is threatened.”
And now, according to what happened at a meeting on Monday, December 16, the talk is about a “unity government” with members of the opposition participating in key posts. According to the blog haitistandard.com, after meeting with members of the “Passerelle,” the opposition coalition that presented a plan to resolve the crisis, and also after meeting with members of the ruling PHTK (Bald Headed Party), there’s hope for a broad government. Discussions are being coordinated by UN’s representative Helen Meagher Lalime and will be held at the Nuncio’s residence, the Pope’s diplomatic representative in Haiti. U.S. Ambassador Michele Sison will be also participating. All should be in place by today, Wednesday, December 18. So, which Jovenel Moïse are we to believe in? The apprentice dictator or the one who believes in real dialogue? There’s a saying that we would offer to all for meditation: “Your actions speak so loudly that I can’t hear what you say.”
cet article est publié par l’hebdomadaire Haïti-Observateur, édition du 18 décembre 2019, VOL XXXXIX No.49, et se trouve en P.7 à : http://haiti-observateur.info/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/H-O-11-d%C3%A9cemb-2019.pdf