PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (sentinel.ht) – The inauguration of the 58th President of the Republic of Haiti took place under these circumstances: Under the cloud of a money-laundering investigation, the President-elect Jovenel Moise took the oath of office before a National Assembly presided by Senator Youri Latortue, who has been alleged by official foreign sources as being involved in a range of organized criminal activities and being the “poster-boy for political corruption”.
None the less, Tuesday, February 7, 2017, the oath of office was taken, the president was installed to follow through the customary ceremonial inauguration events.
After the swearing in, President Moise and the First Lady visited the Haitian National Pantheon Museum, where much of Haiti’s historical artifacts are kept. He took the guided tour and signed the Golden Book.
Following the tour at MUNAPAH was the traditional Te Deum and address to the nation, which takes place on the grounds of the National Palace. The Te Deum was delivered by the Haitian Cardinal Chibly Langlois before the president’s address.
In his address, President Moise thanked his supporters and said the foundations of his government would be good governance, democracy, competence, social justice, implementation of sustainable development projects, integrity and morality.
On Monday, February 6, 2017, Government Commissioner Jean Danton Leger did not announce an end to the money-laundering probe against then-President-elect Jovenel Moise. He found the work of the investigating judge, Bredy Fabien, to be insufficient. He harked the attention of the nation to the absence of interviews with the numbers of persons involved in the affairs, as cited by the investigative reports by the Central Financial Intelligence Unit (UCREF) and the Unit Combating Corruption (ULCC).
Critics of Moise criticized Judge Fabien for having had the case before him since September 2016, but not beginning to work on the case until January 17, 2017, after public outcry. The judge only interviewed four persons in the case, high-ranking government officials who served the previous administration, of which Mr. Moise is party to. Among those “interviews”, the first one, was the impromptu spectacle mid-January of the president-elect at the judge’s office although having not been summoned. Following this appearance, Mr. Moise made a press declaration where he declared the case unfounded and closed. It is doubtful that a proper investigation can take place now that he is in office.
Senator Youri Latortue (Artibonite/AAA), who was first denied a run for senate president due to the doubts about his re-election in the 2015 elections and dubious reputation, was elected President of the Senate in January 2017. Mr. Latortue has been accused for years of being involved in drug-trafficking and other organized crimes for years. Even a 2005 U.S. Embassy memo released by Wikileaks shows officials of the Bush administration were aware of Latortue’s alleged activities.