PM pleased about Aristide’s return to Haiti
Even as the leaders of other nations expressed concern about the return of Haiti’s exiled leader Jean-Bertrand Aristide, Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham said he is happy about the former Haitian president’s return to his homeland.
“Firstly I want to give a shout out to my Haitian brothers and sisters and say how pleased I am that President Aristide has been allowed to return back to Haiti,”Ingraham said during a Free National Movement(FNM)mass rally on Saturday night.
Aristide returned to Haiti on Friday morning-just two days before Haiti’s elections.
According to the Associated Press, United States National Security Council Spokesman Tommy Vietor, said the U.S.”along with others in the international community, has deep concerns that President Aristide’s return to Haiti in the closing days of the election could be destabilizing.”And it’s a concern that was reiterated by U.S. President Barack Obama.
Elections in Haiti were held yesterday.
Ingraham met with Aristide in June last year while in Johannesburg, South Africa during his recent visit to t the African nation.
His return to Haiti has created international headlines.
Aristide became the first democratically elected president of Haiti in 1990. However, less than a year, he was ousted in a military coup. He was restored to power in 1994 with the help of the United States, who assisted him in leaving the country in February 2004 during a rebel uprising.He has lived in exile in South Africa from then until Friday.
While he was in exile, Aristide, 57, was under investigation by U.S. authorities for the embezzlement of millions of Haiti’s public funds for the benefit of his private charities, and other organizations. Aristide’s lawyers have denied the allegations since the claims were made. The investigations have reportedly stalled. It is unknown whether any charges can or will come out of it.
At the same time, Aristide was under investigation by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency. The investigation began after claims arose that Aristide benefited from the country’s drug trade.
While in exile, Aristide followers have clashed with authorities while calling for his return. On Friday his supporters welcomed him into the country with placards emblazoned welcome back”daddy”.