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9082: Sabalat: Chamberlain comments on Hoover (fwd)
From: Greg Chamberlain <GregChamberlain@compuserve.com>
Julie Hoover wrote:
> When Aristide was initially elected President,
> our New York-based group, Americans for Aristide,
> eagerly awaited his appointment of the Ambassador to
> the U.S. When Jean Casimir finally received Congressional
> approval, our invitation for a visit was one of the first he
> received. He came to my house in New York for a meeting.
> Another man sitting on a stool beside him began to chime in.
> I assumed he was Casimir's driver (due to the heat,
> everyone had taken their jackets off and he looked like
> a regular guy)
> As the evening went on, however, I began to feel very sad
> about the "driver"-- he spoke up many times and always
> said such intelligent things. He seemed so astoundingly
> astute--too bad he could not have some position in the
> government. It was only when all the meeting participants
> were leaving that I learned that Sabalat was actually Haiti's
> new Foreign Minister.
There are no regularly employed drivers in Haiti of Sabalat's (pass for
white) colour and never have been.
He did not become foreign minister as soon as Aristide took office. He was
named to that post seven months later, on 19 September (1991), 11 days
before Aristide was overthrown. This was in compensation for his
nomination as ambassador to France, Switzerland and the Vatican having been
rejected by the Haitian Senate on September 4. The senators suspected he
had been involved in corruption over a printing contract during the
elections he organised the previous year as head of the electoral council.
They never got round to confirming his nomination as foreign minister.