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8705: Re: 8695: On Lavalas corruption; one mo' time (fwd)

Please post anonymously.

Wow! I never thought I would see the day when I would
agree 100% with Simidor on something ... or that I
would be disappointed at Hyppolite Pierre's stance on
a topic given (usually) rational and objective

However, on the topic of corruption and transparency,
I must say that Lavalas let us down BIG TIME.
Corruption is not necessarily having an official dip
in the state's coffers for his/her own benefit. Today,
corruption is about doing everything to keep a small
group of people living "large" while the people in the
country suffer.

What the GOH has done lately is nothing short of
breathtaking. Maybe Hyppolite Pierre, Michelle Karshan
and Ira Kurzban can answer or provide information on
the following questions:

1) Since February 7, how many NEW cars/SUVs did the
Ministry of Finance buy for government officials? Who
received them? What happened to the fleet of cars that
were inherited from the Preval administration? What
percentage of gross revenues from taxes did these
purchases represent? Did the government really have to
buy a whole new set of Nissan Patrols?

2) Can the general public get from the GOH the budget
allocated to, say, the Ministry of Public Health
(MSPP)? Of this budget, how much is spent on salaries?
how about luxury vehicles for officials from that
ministry? By comparison, how much has been spent on
direct programs to benefit the population? Where was
that money spent and how?

3) What is the GOH's policy on international travel?
How about per diem? Can we get a breakdown of which
officials traveled where and at what cost? For what

4) Why not dispel once and for all the rumours
regarding the purchase of $1.2 million house (where
Preval lives) and the purchase by the Prime Minister
of a $1 million house in Canape Vert (Marc Ashton's
former residence)? Who received commissions on deals,
and how much did they get? Why can't the GOH just
prove to the people that these rumours are false? If
on the contrary these rumours are true, can these
expenses be justified given the state of the GOH's
finances? By the way, if the PM bought the house with
his own money, can someone remind me again how
Cherestal became a millionaire? What's his current

5. Let's give some credit to Preval (actually Lesly
Voltaire) for the redesign of the Camp de Mars, Place
d'Italie, etc. Let's also give credit to Preval for
building schools, although this begs the question of
the quality of the educators that will teach in these
new schools. Let's give Preval credit for developing a
meaningful cooperation program with Cuba. One however
MUST ask these questions: is this it? What else has
been done during the 5 years of the Preval
administration? Why did they allow the infrastructures
of the country to sink to such low levels of
disrepair? Couldn't they have taken some of the money
spent to help EdH? What were they thinking? Were they
asleep at the wheel?

The questions above may sound like superfial stuff to
the readers of the Corbett list, but the point I want
to make is that Lavalas was supposed to be about
transparency and accountability. Unfortunately, up to
now, we have had neither.

Finally, Kathy Dorce wrote the following in an earlier
post in response to Simidor:

"You have not said anything that would make any
rational person change their mind about supporting
Aristide (note I do not say Lavalas)." 

Well, I'll be damned! This sounds to me as if we are
getting back to the good ol' cult of personality
thing. If we are to rely on Aristide but be wary of
the people around him, how can we build solid
INSTITUTIONS? Doesn't trusting one individual to carry
the country take us back to square one? And what does
that say about the ideological convictions of the
people around him? Are they just ... gulp ...
opportunists? Can they be TRUSTED at all? What does
that make of Fanmi Lavalas as a political party?

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