Haiti’s Prime Minister fires the prosecutor who accused him of involvement in the president’s assassination.
The inquiry into the death of Haitian President Jovenel Moise was thrown into disarray Tuesday when the Caribbean island’s prime minister fired a prosecutor who had been accused of involvement in the crime.
Prime Minister Ariel Henry’s decision to fire prosecutor Bed-Ford More than two months after Moise was assassinated in his home by gunmen, Claude exposed infighting at the top ranks of what is left of Haiti’s government.
Henry’s move came just hours after Claude requested that the judge investigating Moise’s murder charge the prime minister.
In a widely circulated letter, Henry told Claude, “I have the pleasure of notifying you that it was decided to terminate your post.”
Moise appointed Henry as Prime Minister just days before the president was assassinated.
On July 20, he was sworn in as president, promising to alleviate the country’s poor security situation and hold long-delayed elections. Haiti currently lacks a functioning president and parliament.
But, based on reported phone talks the prime minister had with one of the key suspects in the hours after the death, Claude began pointing the blame at Henry.
In an official letter submitted to a Port-au-Prince court, Claude wrote, “There are sufficient compromising aspects that create (my) conviction on the necessity of prosecuting Mr. Henry and asking his outright indictment.”
Claude further requested that Henry be barred from leaving the island nation “for significant presumptions of assassination of the President of the Republic” in a second letter.
Moise, a politically and publically divisive figure, was assassinated in his private apartment in the Haitian capital on the weekend of July 6 and 7.
Henry had already been summoned to testify in the case concerning alleged conversations he had with a former government official wanted in connection with Moise’s murder just hours after he was killed.
The former official, Joseph Felix Badio, who worked in the justice ministry’s anti-corruption branch, is still being sought by police.
When Badio contacted Henry twice in the early hours of July 7, after the president was shot dead by gunmen, his phone was purportedly tracked to an area near Moise’s home.
The calls lasted a total of seven minutes, according to Claude, who was the government commissioner in Port-au-Prince, which is equal to a federal prosecutor.
He also brought up a tweet from a government employee last month, in which Henry stated he had never spoken with Badio.
A prime minister is not allowed to do so by law. Brief News from Washington Newsday.