Haitian president: Trump's 's---hole countries' comments not good for tourism


BY REBECCA SAVRANSKY - 02/06/18


© Getty Images


Haitian President Jovenel Moïse said President Trump's reported "shithole countries" comments have not been good for his country's tourism industry.


“I must be clear with you,” Moïse said in interview with Local 10 News, an ABC affiliate.


“These comments haven't helped our image or tourism industry. But to the rest of the world, I say Haiti is a beautiful place, an amazing place to visit.”


Moïse said during the interview that Haitian people are "proud, and aspire for a better future."


"I see it as a call to arms," he said.


Trump during a White House meeting last month reportedly referred to Haiti, El Salvador and African nations as "shithole countries."


The president faced widespread backlash and accusations of racism for the remarks.


Trump has since pushed back against the reports and denied he is racist.


Last month, the U.S. Embassy in Haiti was temporarily closed after demonstrators took to the streets in Port-au-Prince to protest Trump.


 Moïse said during the interview that Haiti is hoping to revive its tourism industry. He also said Haiti is looking to create jobs and build new health centers, among other goals.


"We really want to take this momentum to show Haiti is not all that negative on the news," he said.


Haiti - Politics: Moïses on a visit to the Urban Park of Martissant makes promises


Last Friday, President Jovenel Moïse, accompanied by among others Prime Minister Jack Guy Lafontant and Fritz Caillot, the Secretary of Public works, visited the National Urban Park of Martissant (Habitation Leclerc), where he was welcomed by Michèle Duvivier Pierre-Louis, President of "Fondasyon Konesans ak Libète" (FOKAL). It should be noted that Patrick Gaspard, adviser to former president Obama and current President of "Open Society Foundation", the main sponsor of FOKAL, also participated in this visit.


Pierre Louis reminded that in 2007 Habitation Leclerc, a 17 hectare property, received the government’s approval under President René Préval to be managed by FOKAL. The park, which is a part of the protected areas since 2017, includes among other things gardens of healing plants, a library, a cultural center and play areas for children.


This visit was an occasion for the Head of State to advocate for a public – private partnership to better serve the population. Determined to channel international assistance according to the priorities of the population, Moïses presented the Park of Martissant as a successful model thanks to effective help from international sponsors. "The National Urban Park of Martissant is one ‘Success Story.’ We are going to take advantage of it to set up jobs with a high need for manual labor, particularly in the area surrounding Martissant. Within this framework, the government is committed to supporting the operating budget of this park. I am impressed by all that I saw and I encourage the sponsors to make their contribution to support FOKAL."


Besides repeating his desire to improve the conditions in the country and to offer a living environment pleasant to all Haitians, Moïses introduced the new "Jere Pye bwa w," program which along with other existing initiatives is designed to improve the country’s environmental image. He explained that the "Jere Pye bwa w" program will allow every citizen involved to benefit from an allowance for fruit trees placed under his or her protection during the required time, so that they may reach maturity.


Fake story ties dead Haitian official to Clinton Foundation allegations


"Haiti official getting ready to testify against Clinton Foundation corruption next week found dead with gunshot to the head."


By Amy Sherman on Friday, January 26th, 2018 at 3:53 p.m.


Miami Herald article about a former Haitian government official who committed suicide in July became the inspiration for fake news websites to make unsubstantiated claims tying the official to allegations about the Clinton Foundation.


"Haiti official getting ready to testify against Clinton Foundation corruption next week found dead with ‘gunshot to the head,’ " stated a Jan. 14 headline on US Political News.


Facebook users flagged the post as being potentially fabricated, as part of the social network’s efforts to combat fake news. We found that the story offers no evidence to tie the former Haitian official, Klaus Eberwein, to criticisms of the Clinton Foundation and largely repeats information from a fake news story last year.  


In July, the Miami Herald reported that Eberwein, a former Haitian government official, was found dead in a South Florida motel room. Eberwein, who had worked as an Uber driver in South Florida, had fallen on hard times.


Eberwein served as director general of the government’s economic development agency, Fonds d’assistance économique et social (FAES), from May 2012 until February 2015 when he was replaced. The Herald reported that Eberwein had faced allegations of fraud and corruption on how FAES administered funds.


Eberwein shot himself in the head the day he was supposed to appear before the Haitian Senate’s Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission. The commission was investigating the management of PetroCaribe funds, the money Haiti receives from Venezuela’s discounted oil program.


The Herald story made no mention of the Clinton Foundation or the Clintons. But a couple of days later, YourNewsWire, a website that posts fake news, made a series of inflammatory and unsubstantiated statements tying Eberwein to criticism of the Clinton Foundation.


Your News Wire wrote that Eberwein was "widely expected to testify that the Clinton Foundation misappropriated Haiti earthquake donations from international donors."


"The Clinton Foundation, they are criminals, they are thieves, they are liars, they are a disgrace," YourNewsWire quoted Eberwein as saying at a Clinton Foundation protest.


But the website offered no evidence that Eberwein planned to testify against the Clinton Foundation or made any such statements.


US Political News used many portions of the YourNewsWire article and then added some additional information, including a clip of actual statements by another former Haitian official about the Clintons.


US Political News included a video of the former Senate President of Haiti, Bernard Sansaricq, at a 2016 Donald Trump campaign event in Little Haiti in South Florida. Sansaricq criticized the record of the Clintons in Haiti.


The Clintons have a long and complicated history with Haiti, but there is no evidence that Eberwein was "getting ready to ready to testify against Clinton Foundation corruption." He was getting ready to testify about something unrelated: money Haiti received from a Venezuela oil program.


Finally, the timeline of the fake story makes no sense: Eberwein committed suicide in July 2017 while the January 2018 headline says he was getting ready to testify "next week."


We rate this headline Pants on Fire.


Stephanie Denizard, a Revelation During Haiti Fashion Week 2018


Although she has enjoyed her career for less than a year, Stephanie Denizard is already making a name for herself in the fashion world. This newcomer, already noted for her size and her spirit, had a memorable presence at the Queen Bikini Ayiti as the Ambassadress of Thomonde - her hometown.


Stéphanie, 19-year-old, is the oldest of three children. She is seriously committed to modelling and prioritizes only her studies before her chosen career.


This model, who is more than two meters tall in high heels, seems to be completely comfortable under heavy lights, or on footbridges lined with curious passersby. However, she is a “Just Come” who began her career in the summer of 2017 with the Caramel agency which decided to sign her on, without wasting any time. A rather advantageous decision for Denizard and also the fashion world which now has a new face filled with promise.


Since the Queen Bikini Ayiti Competition, she has distinguished herself with her enthusiasm and her passion, in spite of the fact that she is a latecomer when compared to others in the field. Quite recently, during Fashion Week in El Rancho in January, she was spotted parading for almost all the designers at the event, by having been the first face of several collections, by opening the show on the third day, along with a strong stage presence during all four days. She would be a goose that lays the golden eggs, if there was really a fashion industry in Haiti which would sign contracts with claws or with big fashion houses worldwide. But for us at the level of Mag Haiti, she is a real REVELATION.


When questioned about the secret of her adaptation to the requirements and the pressure of this field, the novice stated she had enough preparation by taking notes from Naomie Campbell and by following the recommendations of her instructor and agent. To make the biggest stage of the country is a record, however her work is not finished, she continued, pointing out that several other objectives remain to be reached, such as runway shows abroad, modeling contracts, commercials and more, without forgetting her priority project- to build a multi-purpose modeling center in her home town.


Let us welcome Stephanie Denizard to this universe, as unpredictable as it is challenging. We wish her continued success, hoping she will keep her big smile and her overflowing passion for fashion which suits her marvelously.


Brana, Help and Conan O' Brien united to bring more advanced training in Haiti


Published in the Nouvelliste


The national Brewery of Haiti (Brana) is going to allocate $100,000 dollars to the Haiti and Leadership Program (HELP). This information was communicated by Régine René Laboursse, public relations manager for the company. According to her, the initiative was taken after the recent visit of the American comedian, Conan O'Brien, to Haiti.


“He came to the country to do a show, following the words of Donald Trump on Haiti. He showcased the positive side of Haiti. During his stay, he visited Brana. He amused us and we had him sample our beer, Prestige. He liked it so much that he decided to shoot a video promotion for the beer. This promotion was not requested.


Our company agreed with him to strengthen a program in Haiti and not pay the expenses for advertising. We suggested assigning $ 50,000 dollars to the program Help. O' Brien decided to do the same thing," she explained. Help will benefit from $100,000.


Gary Délice, national director of Help, was grateful of the gesture of these two entities. "To find funds for this program is a daily task. We have to make sure we can sponsor the student during all of his or her academic studies. That's why we are grateful to Brana who thought of us. We want to support 50 students every year. But basic problems force us to frequently revise this figure downwards. It is always sad to refuse to help a young person. These funds come just at the right time. They will allow us to support more young people," he declared, adding that each student costs the program $10,000 a year.


According to Régine René Labrousse, Brana has supported the Help program since 2013. This support is part of a strategy to help the youth have a real impact on the future of the country.


“Through our production, we want to have a positive socioeconomic impact on the country. When the brasserie works well, this impact increases. Heineken invested more than $250 million in the national brewery. After the first slice of investment, we noticed that there was no basic problem of funds or of equipment in the company. There was rather a deficiency of skills to manage the equipment. That's why the second slice of the investment is being used to hire executives and leaders in the company. It is the same strategy which we pursue outside of the brewery. We help Help to develop the skills. We cannot think of the long-term impact of this investment without investing in the youth ", she estimated.


Several sponsors of the program also offer an internship in their company. Régine René Labrousse says they are very satisfied with the contribution of these young people to her institution.


"Every time we welcome a student from Help, the contribution of this individual have been remarkable. I remember an intern whom we had hired at the end of his internship. Two years later, he was promoted to manager for his performance," she explained.


Gary Délice, for his part, praises this aspect of the partnership with this company. "It is praiseworthy to give to these young people opportunities so that they can showcase their potential," he noted, adding that three former students from the program now work at the brewery.


John Garçon receives the Leonardo da Vinci Award in Italy


It is in Italy, under the dome of the Palace Borghese, in Florence, that the Haitian painter John Garçon received the international Leonardo da Vinci Award last month.


(An extract of an interview by Claude Bernard Seran)


Having received this distinction, one of the most prestigious in the world of the arts, what’s next?


J.G.: To receive such a prize makes you grow and brings you serenity and humility about your work, which has to stand on its own. I am going to continue to work as before with the perseverance to continue to speak about Haiti in other forums of contemporary art. And then, I intend to exhibit more often in Haiti to promote my collection.