US The elected Haitian buys a huge villa in Quebec and arouses indignation

21:10  21 february  2021
21:10  21 february  2021 Source:   ouest-france.fr

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La villa du sénateur haïtien, à Laval, près de Montréal. © Immobilier Centris The villa of the Haitian senator, in Laval, near Montreal.

The purchase of a villa near Montreal by a senator from Haiti scandalizes the diaspora living in Quebec. A corruption investigation has been opened.

A Haitian senator, Rony Célestin, bought himself a beautiful villa in Canada , for Christmas. Its ostentatious luxury is spread out in Laval, a stone's throw from Montreal. Amount of the acquisition: 2.7 million euros, paid in cash. Not bad for a politician, elected in a country where a large part of the population lives on less than 1.60 euro a day.

The case has aroused indignation among the Haitian diaspora in Quebec, which numbers around 200,000 people.

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Suspicions of corruption

Indecent, disrespectful, scandalous…, says Frantz André, member of the Solidarité Québec Haiti organization. Like many exiles, he suspects the Célestin couple, who already own another house in the province, of money laundering and funds arriving by diplomatic bag.

The Senator’s wife is Haitian Vice-Consul in Montreal.

An open investigation

Rony Célestin's Montreal lawyer defends his client's probity. He is also an entrepreneur, with interests in China, and his fortune has nothing to do with his public office. The Haiti Anti-Corruption Unit has nonetheless opened an investigation into this huge purchase, after the revelations of the Quebec press.

The scandal comes as protests multiply against Haitian President Jovenel Moïse , who has no constitutional legitimacy since February 7. Senator Célestin is a member of the ruling party, the PHTK.

The diaspora which militates mainly for a democratic renewal in Haiti denounces the hidden support of Canada to Jovenel. About 100 prominent figures, including members of the Canadian Institute for Foreign Policy, signed an open letter to this effect.

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This is interesting!