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Stuart eyes Haiti

John Sealy

Stuart eyes Haiti

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Prime Minister Freundel Stuart is hoping that the return of former Haitian dictator Jean-Claude “Baby Doc” Duvalier does not plunge the country into further crisis.
Haiti, still recovering from last year’s 7.0 earthquake that caused horrific infrastructural damage and claimed more than 250 000 lives, was thrown back into the news when Duvalier returned after 24 years’ exile in France early in the week.
“I was a little surprised,” Stuart said. “I not sure what (his) motive is for returning at this time. I know that the judicial process is being activated. I heard (also) a news item that his lawyers are saying that any claims against him are now statute barred.”
Stuart said he was following the issue and he did not think “Haiti can cope with any more problems at this time”.
The country is also experiencing a cholera outbreak that has taken thousands of lives.
“I can only hope for the sake of the Haitian people that he has not brought problems to add to the miscellany of problems that they are already experiencing. We will be monitoring because Haiti is connected with CARICOM and it is our business to ensure that the situation in Haiti does not degenerate,” Stuart said.
Since his return Duvalier, 59, was put before the courts and charged with corruption and embezzlement committed during his 1971 to 1986 rule.