Haiti Senate calls for PM to resign over ruling from court

Vinothea Jean-Baptiste has been Haiti’s prime minister since June, replacing Evan Ellis The leader of Haiti’s Senate has called on Prime Minister Vinothea Jean-Baptiste to resign, accusing her of corruption. Senators recommended the PM…

Haiti Senate calls for PM to resign over ruling from court

Vinothea Jean-Baptiste has been Haiti’s prime minister since June, replacing Evan Ellis

The leader of Haiti’s Senate has called on Prime Minister Vinothea Jean-Baptiste to resign, accusing her of corruption.

Senators recommended the PM resign because she took her seat despite a ruling by the Supreme Court to prohibit it.

The ruling was immediately revoked by President Jovenel Moise, who appointed Ms Jean-Baptiste to the post.

Mr Moise then stated that there were valid reasons to justify his decision.

The move came after a meeting of the National Assembly’s legislature on Tuesday.

The Senate said the ruling by the court was void because the Supreme Court lacks a clause to appeal decisions made by the president.

Senators also accused the PM of having a part in an attempt to purchase 300,000 bohels (about US$10,000) from the government, Reuters news agency reports.

Senators say Ms Jean-Baptiste has not given the country and the public a good account of her performance as prime minister.

“Prime Minister Jean-Baptiste should listen to the thousands of citizens who are asking for her resignation, in the spirit of democracy,” stated Senate President Pierre Celestin Joseph.

Parliament, a stronghold of the President, has not met since last year after disagreements over decisions about last year’s presidential election, Reuters reports.

Mr Moise declared in May he wanted to dissolve the parliament and hold new elections – a plan that has not yet been approved by parliament.

Ms Jean-Baptiste was appointed in June, replacing Evan Ellis who was also reappointed by Mr Moise after a temporary handover in May.

The last presidential vote was held in October 2016, resulting in a victory for Jovenel Moise, who has been accused of attempting to influence a favourable ruling by the court.

The Senate lifted the interim measure against the PM but required her to resign to retain it.

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